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This brief report outlines why the Mayor and City Council must act immediately to cut DOC's inflated budget, for the safety of people in their custody, and for the good of our communities.
ACLU of Wisconsin;
Our democracy works best when all eligible Wisconsinites participate. The freedom to vote is central to building an America that works for us all. But too many Wisconsinites face needless and discriminatory barriers that limit this right. This is particularly true of eligible Wisconsinites in county jails.This report updates our July 2020 report, Ballots for All: Ensuring Eligible Wisconsin Voters in Jail Have Equal Access to Voting. In the past year, many jail administrators have taken small but important steps to increase ballot access for individuals in their care. Even in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, with restrictions on who can support jail-based voter registration and absentee ballot application events in county jails, advocates and jail administrators found creative ways to ensure that eligible Wisconsinites could have their voices heard in the 2020 elections. While this is progress, troubling barriers remain. This report offers additional recommendations for state and local officials to protect the freedom to vote for every eligible Wisconsinite.
Throughout history, the US has created laws that have discriminated against people of color, and as a result, examples of differential treatment on the basis of race can be found throughout the criminal legal system. This brief aims to provide a comprehensive overview of racial disparities at each level of the criminal legal system and highlight how each decision point of the system impacts the next, resulting in continuous, disparate outcomes for people of color. Our findings suggest that in order to address these disparities, researchers must approach their work with appropriately contextualized research questions and an understanding of the language they use. Additionally, researchers should frame reported statistics with the appropriate historical setting, and actively approach research through community engaged methods.
Each year, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detains over 100,000 immigrants, including people who have lived in the U.S. for decades, parents of U.S. citizens and individuals who come to the country seeking safety. ICE subjects people in detention to dangerous conditions and substandard medical care. Detention facilities are often located in rural, hard to reach areas, inaccessible to families and legal counsel. The unprecedented scale of immigration detention has been driven in large part by private prison companies that capture the lion's share of the over one billion dollars spent every year to lock up immigrants.This policy brief describes the harms and racial injustices that have resulted from U.S. laws requiring the detention of certain categories of individuals based on past involvement in the criminal legal systems, as well as recommendations for steps Congress can take to address these injustices.
Detention Watch Network;
This report examines the role of immigration detention in local economies and outlines a vision for a just transition away from economies dependent on detention centers. The report compiles research on prisons, economic development, and trend lines in adult and youth incarceration around the country, and draws on interviews with more than 20 community organizers, advocates, lawyers, and experts on immigration detention and adult and juvenile prison systems.
Texas Civil Rights Project (TCRP);
The purpose of the redistricting process should be to create districts that accurately reflect the communities they represent and to distribute political power across those communities. But counting incarcerated individuals at the facility where they are incarcerated, rather than their home addresses, artificially bolsters the political power of certain communities on the backs of individuals who are not truly part of those communities, while simultaneously reducing the political voices of their home communities. In Texas, there are dramatic implications, with a handful of rural regions gaining a disproportionate share of the political power over other rural regions and diminishing the true population count in certain urban areas. This under-representation only exacerbates existing problems with Census undercounts and socio economic disparities which have a root in racial discrimination. It also deviates from how Texas law treats incarcerated populations in every other context, creating a conflict with the Texas constitution that needs to be addressed.Traditionally, the United States Census Bureau has counted incarcerated individuals at the facility where they are housed, but the Bureau has made clear that this historical practice has persisted only for administrative reasons, not for legal or policy ones. Recently, the Census Bureau has evolved in its treatment of incarcerated populations, and, for the first time, will make it practical for states on tight timelines to assign incarcerated individuals to their home communities. Many states across the nation are taking advantage of this opportunity to correct for the distortions created by prison gerrymandering. In order to more accurately reflect the state's population, Texas legislators should take advantage of the Census Bureau's new tools and work with state agencies to identify those prisoners who, rightfully, should be counted at an address in their permanent community.
Detention Watch Network;
As a Presidential candidate, Joe Biden promised to end the use of private prisons in federal incarceration and immigration detention claiming "that the federal government should not use private facilities for any detention, including detention of undocumented immigrants." This report provides an overview of progress towards that unfulfilled promise and outlines the steps the administration must take to end the federal use of private prisons and phase out the use of immigration detention entirely.
COVID19 Policing Project;
The COVID19 Policing Project is a collaborative effort to track and challenge policing and criminalization in the context of the coronavirus pandemic, including the violent policing of protest which further jeopardizes public health. This is the first in a series of reports summarizing and analyzing what we've learned, and offering visions and guidance for responding to #COVIDWithoutCops.
All Voting is Local;
In Pennsylvania, county jail administrators are not fulfilling their legal responsibility to voters. Jails are required by law to provide registration and voting opportunities to all eligible voters. Currently, Pennsylvania county jails do not have a universal process for voter registration, voting by mail, or voter education. We refer to this as de facto disenfranchisement. The freedom to vote is central to building an America that works for us all, and no eligible voter should be denied this right. Through research, advocacy, and community outreach, we will both support jail administrators with tools to increase rates of voter registration and voting and, critically, hold them accountable to ensure all eligible voters can cast a ballot.
Washington State Institue for Public Policy;
In 2019, WSIPP updated the full portfolio of juvenile justice meta-analyses, benefit-cost analyses, and the resulting evidence classifications. This work aligned with WSIPP's ninth update of the Children's Services Inventory ("the inventory"), published in December 2019. The inventory describes the research evidence and benefit-cost findings for a variety of programs in the areas of juvenile justice, child welfare, and children's mental health, and classifies each program according to its level of evidence and benefit-cost findings. WSIPP's update to the inventory led to changes in the evidence classification for several juvenile justice programs operating in Washington State. Four programs previously classified as either evidence-based or research-based are now promising or null. This resource guide serves as a companion document to the inventory and as a resource for Washington State policymakers and practitioners to understand how changes in the meta-analyses and benefit-cost analyses of juvenile justice programs resulted in changes to evidence classifications. In the guide, WSIPP explains the specific changes made to all meta-analyses and benefit-cost analyses of juvenile justice programs in 2019. Then, the guide provides details for several programs eligible for Washington State funding for youth involved in the juvenile courts or committed to a Juvenile Rehabilitation facility. For each eligible program, the guide reviews relevant changes to the content in the specific meta-analysis, changes to the calculations of meta-analytic results, changes made to the costs of the program, and changes made to WSIPP's standard benefit-cost model. While WSIPP classifies a broad array of programs, and these evidence classifications are subject to change over time, this guide focuses specifically on changes to classifications for juvenile justice programs eligible for state dollars.
Annie E. Casey Foundation;
This Casey Foundation report explores the Foundation's deep-end effort, which is helping juvenile justice jurisdictions safely and significantly reduce youth confinement — especially for young people of color. It highlights a troublesome practice: the use of correctional confinement for youth who have violated the conditions of their probation — but not the law — and argues for eliminating confinement as a response to probation rule violations.
Center for Court Innovation;
New York City's promise to shutter its notorious Rikers Island jail complex hinges on reducing the number of people in city jails. This new report from the Independent Commission that called for Rikers' closure in 2017 and the Center for Court Innovation lays out a series of concrete, data-driven strategies to produce sizable jail reductions while prioritizing public safety.The annual cost of detaining someone on Rikers has soared to $447,000. As the report emphasizes, that is money that could be more productively used on a range of interventions to foster safer neighborhoods. Increasingly, research is finding stays in jail increase the likelihood of future criminal activity once someone is released, making us all less, not more, safe.The report recommends numerous policy changes, covering everything from improving case processing times—85 percent of the population on Rikers is presumed innocent and waiting, generally for months, for their day in court—to ensuring people's ability to pay bail is properly assessed, as is required by law. In combination, these changes can lastingly remake New York City's approach to incarceration.