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Draconian state laws will prevent 4.6 million Americans from voting in 2022 midterms.

The Sentencing Project

Over 35 Years of Fighting for Justice

We advocate for effective and humane responses to crime that minimize imprisonment and criminalization of youth and adults by promoting racial, ethnic, economic, and gender justice.

  • Elderly man in prison sits with his head on his desk. Behind him are several other elderly incarcerated men in wheel chairs.

    Groundbreaking Research

    Explore our trusted research on the U.S. criminal legal system. Get the data, compare state statistics, and search resources in our comprehensive digital library.

    Explore our research
  • Fighting for Real Change

    Join us in the fight to advance policies that are rooted in research and promote humane and effective approaches to justice for youth and adults.

    Join our fight
  • Mission, Vision, and Priorities

    See how we're advancing a more equitable criminal legal system that promotes the full inclusion of people with criminal records and puts an end to extreme punishments.

    Learn more about our mission
Experiences

Amplifying Impacted Voices

Photo of John Pace

John Pace

Sentenced to life in prison as a teen, John Pace spent 31 years behind bars before a Supreme Court decision brought him home. Now, he works to assist others who are coming out of prison and adjusting to life on the outside.

It's time for a second look
Photo of Monica Szlekovics

Monica Szlekovics

Monica Szlekovics was forced to contribute to crimes by her abusive husband, which led to her being sentenced to life in prison at 20 years old. In prison, she committed herself to personal transformation and her sentence was commuted in 2019.

Gender justice must tell #HerWholeTruth
Photo of Tevin Louis

Tevin Louis

In 2012, Tevin Louis was charged with felony murder after a police officer killed his friend. In 2021, Illinois narrowed the scope of its felony murder rule, but unless it’s applied retroactively, Tevin will have to serve a 52-year sentence.

It's time to end extreme sentences
Photo of Melody Brown

Melody Brown

When Melody Brown’s husband was murdered, she never thought she would be able to forgive the man who killed him. However, she was able to find mercy and forgiveness, and even supported the man’s release under Washington, DC’s second look reforms. Now, she’s working at a local nonprofit to support formerly incarcerated people in the District.

We must recognize the power of second chances
Experiences

Amplifying Impacted Voices

Photo of Monica Szlekovics

Monica Szlekovics

Monica Szlekovics was forced to contribute to crimes by her abusive husband, which led to her being sentenced to life in prison at 20 years old. In prison, she committed herself to personal transformation and her sentence was commuted in 2019.

Gender justice must tell #HerWholeTruth
Photo of Melody Brown

Melody Brown

When Melody Brown’s husband was murdered, she never thought she would be able to forgive the man who killed him. However, she was able to find mercy and forgiveness, and even supported the man’s release under Washington, DC’s second look reforms. Now, she’s working at a local nonprofit to support formerly incarcerated people in the District.

We must recognize the power of second chances
Photo of John Pace

John Pace

Sentenced to life in prison as a teen, John Pace spent 31 years behind bars before a Supreme Court decision brought him home. Now, he works to assist others who are coming out of prison and adjusting to life on the outside.

It's time for a second look
Photo of Tevin Louis

Tevin Louis

In 2012, Tevin Louis was charged with felony murder after a police officer killed his friend. In 2021, Illinois narrowed the scope of its felony murder rule, but unless it’s applied retroactively, Tevin will have to serve a 52-year sentence.

It's time to end extreme sentences
Picture of people holding hands up in the air at a protest
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Help End Mass Incarceration and Racial Injustice

Support our groundbreaking research, advocacy, and public education programs and help fight to end mass incarceration and racial injustice. Change needs to happen now–and together, we can make a difference.

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