The Sentencing Project News
July 31, 2015
Disenfranchisement News: Growing momentum for restoring the right to vote
Florida: Presidential candidates' felony disenfranchisement records
National: Growing momentum for restoring the right to vote
The "war on drugs" and black disenfranchisement
Racial attitudes and ideology affect support for restoration of voting rights
July 23, 2015
Race & Justice News: Risk Assessment or Race Assessment?
Sentencing: Risk Assessment or Race Assessment?
Pennsylvania Drug-Free School Zone Enhancements Declared Unconstitutional
Prosecution: 95% of Elected Prosecutors Nationwide Are White
Policing: Philadelphia's Civil Asset Forfeiture Laws Disproportionately Enforced Against African Americans
An Agenda to Alleviate Probelms of Race in Policing
July 16, 2015 (Al Jazeera America)
President Obama's prison visit caps big week for justice reform
"President Barack Obama’s tour of El Reno federal prison in Oklahoma on Thursday, the first such visit made to a prison by a sitting president, caps a momentous week for the criminal justice reform movement," reports Al Jazeera America.
July 16, 2015 (MSNBC)
Pres. Obama pushes criminal justice reform
The Sentencing Project's Executive Director Marc Mauer appeared on MSNBC to talk criminal justice reform with USC Law Professor Jody Armour on News Nation. In this segment, they discuss how excessively long sentences do not take into account human capacity for change, the stark racial disparities in the criminal justice system, and rising bi-partisan support for reform measures across the country.
July 14, 2015 (The Sentencing Project)
The Sentencing Project Urges Congress to Act on Criminal Justice Reform
Today, The Sentencing Project joined dozens of criminal justice, civil and human rights, and faith leaders in urging Congress to act to reduce unsustainable federal prison populations and racial disparities in criminal justice system.
As the House Oversight & Government Reform committee began a two-day examination of the criminal justice system, The Sentencing Project called on Congress to take meaningful steps -- including reducing mandatory drug sentences and promoting recidivism reduction and reentry programming -- to help establish a justice system that is both fair and consistent with public safety.
July 13, 2015 (Los Angeles Times)
Obama grants clemency to 46 individuals serving time for non-violent drug offenses
Yesterday, President Obama commuted the sentences of 46 individuals serving time for drug offenses, doubling the number of clemencies he has granted as part of his administration’s efforts to reform the criminal justice system.
July 1, 2015
State Advocacy Update: Alabama and Texas Address Lifetime Federal Public Benefits Ban
Efforts to reinstate federal ban in other states: Pennsylvana, Missouri, and Maine
Other news: Alaska, Illinois, Michigan, New York, and Virginia
In recent months there has been legislative reform to modify the federal food stamp ban in states like Alabama and Texas. In 1996, the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) imposed a lifetime denial of federal benefits for cash and food assistance to people convicted in state or federal courts of felony drug offenses; the ban is imposed for no other offenses but drug crimes. States can opt out of the federal ban or modify it by authorizing legislative reform. States that have not authorized a legislative remedy include Alaska, Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina, West Virginia, and Wyoming. During 2014, Missouri modified the federal ban and California opted out of the full ban.
June 30, 2015
Disenfranchisement News: Virginia governor removes financial barrier for voting rights restoration
Virginia: Governor removes modern day "poll tax"
National: Hillary Clinton calls for sweeping voting rights reforms
Voter turnout among people with felony convictions
June 30, 2015 (Truthout)
Ruling Against "Three Strikes" Sentencing Law Opens Door to Reform
Writing in Truthout, The Sentencing Project's Director of Advocacy Nicole Porter explains how a recent Supreme Court ruling highlights the complicated nature of sentencing laws that result in lengthy prison terms. In Johnson v. United States, the Supreme Court found a provision of a federal "three strikes" law to be unconstitutional.
June 26, 2015 (RT)
Mississippi private prisons hold inmates longer, without reducing crime – study
Nazgol Ghandnoosh, a research analyst at The Sentencing Project, appeared on the RT news network to discuss a new study finding that prison stays tend to be longer for individuals in for-profit facilities than public prisons in Mississippi.