August 26, 2020
State Advocacy Update: From Defund the Police to Defund Prisons
The Sentencing Project hosted an online discussion highlighting efforts in California and Colorado to decarcerate and prioritize funding towards crime prevention and community.
August 25, 2020
Trends in U.S. Corrections
The Sentencing Project's key fact sheet provides a compilation of major developments in the criminal justice system over the past several decades.
Lawrence and Lamont Garrison
Sentences for federal drug crimes are based on the quantity of the drugs involved, not the individual’s role in the crime. The emphasis on quantity rather than the role of the offender, along with the conspiracy laws, too often result in disproportionate sentencing, even for first-time offenses such as the Garrisons’.
August 17, 2020
Disenfranchisement News: Iowa Gov. Ends Lifetime Ban on Voting for People with Felony Convictions
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds signed an executive order restoring the right to vote for people with felony convictions. Iowa was the only state that still permanently disenfranchised those with felony convictions unless the governor intervened.
August 07, 2020
Amicus Brief in Support of North Carolina Felony Disenfranchisement Lawsuit
North Carolina felony disenfranchisement law amplifies the hardship that the criminal justice system disproportionately visits upon Black Americans; exacerbates stark racial disparities in income, wealth, and economic opportunity; and unduly mutes the voices of Black North Carolinians in public affairs.
Willie Mays Aikens
In 2008, Willie Mays Aikens made headlines when a federal judge reduced his lengthy prison term to 14 years as a result of the U.S. Sentencing Commission’s adjustment to the crack cocaine sentencing guidelines. Aikens was released in June 2008.
July 20, 2020
State Advocacy News: Emergency Sessions Offer Pathway to Justice Reform
Nearly one third of states have convened emergency sessions in response to COVID-19 or policing issues. Special or emergency sessions may offer criminal justice reform coalitions an opportunity to advance decarceration priorities, address racial disparities, and challenge collateral consequences.
July 09, 2020
Race & Justice News: School Districts Defund the Police
School districts across the nation defund the police, California disproportionately excludes Black and Latinx jurors, US protests for George Floyd spark global activism, and more in Race & Justice News.
July 08, 2020
DC Council Approves Voting in Prison Ahead of November Election
The DC Council passed legislation authorizing voting by residents incarcerated in jail or prison with a felony conviction. The District joins just two states, Maine and Vermont, that maintain voting rights for imprisoned citizens.
June 12, 2020
State Advocacy News: From Protest to Policy
Following the police killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and so many others the nation is demanding justice through direct actions and mass mobilizations. Strategic solutions include a range of recommendations that address racial disparities, reduced law enforcement interactions, and sentencing reforms.
May 11, 2020
Race & Justice News: Los Angeles Discontinues a Predictive-Policing Program
Los Angeles ends its predictive-policing program viewed as biased, African Americans face disproportionate arrest rates for marijuana possession, African and Caribbean immigrants disproportionately isolated in ICE custody, and more in Race & Justice News.
March 27, 2020
Race & Justice News: “Misogynoir” Against Black Female Prosecutors
“Misogynoir” against black female prosecutors, Alabama’s diversion programs confronts racial wealth gap, the struggle to correct a flawed police-use-of-force study, and more in Race & Justice News.