In the NEWS
LARRP posts relevant and important news and articles in this section.
Please send us anything you think we might have missed so we can get it up and stay informed!
A Plea To Governor Newsom:
Don’t Abandon Elderly Incarcerated People To Die From Covid-19
We can’t allow “violent criminal” rhetoric to justify leaving some of the most vulnerable people in dangerous conditions.
Governor Newsom Grants Executive Clemency 3.27.20
Editorial boards in two most populous U.S. counties push for decarceration:
On Wednesday, the editorial board of the Los Angeles Times pointed out the ways in which a COVID-19 outbreak in jails and prisons is a crisis for incarcerated people, their families, and everyone else. The necessary response, the board wrote, is to quickly lower the number of incarcerated people. It applauds the steps taken thus far by Sheriff Alex Villanueva but calls for much more to be done. Specifically, the board adds, “Virtually no defendant should be admitted to jail during this emergency who does not pose a risk to public safety. By definition that includes anyone with bail set, whether they can pay it or not, and anyone subject to jail for a technical parole or probation violation.”
Yesterday, the editorial board of the Chicago Sun-Times called on county justice officials and the office of the Cook County chief judge to “to develop a process to more quickly release many more incarcerated people—without compromising public safety—who run a high risk of being felled by the disease.”
America's Mental Health Crisis Hidden Behind Bars
Tens of thousands of names appear on CalGang database, used by police across the state
L.A. County Dist. Atty. Jackie Lacey announces dismissal of 66,000 marijuana convictions
Ray Leyva Joins L.A. County Probation As Interim Chief
LAPD making almost half as many arrests as a decade ago
Ventura Training Center Provides Parolees Path in Firefighting
Spectrum News 1, By Tanya McRae Camarillo,Dec. 26, 2019
U.S. Supreme Court leaves in place ruling barring prosecution of homeless
The Hidden Cost of Incarceration
Why people are freezing in America’s prisons
Rural justice systems low on pretrial resources leave some to languish, die
The hidden scandal of US criminal justice?
Rural incarceration has boomed
While big cities are finally putting fewer people in jail, small towns and rural counties are locking up more people than ever
How College In Prison Turns Around Lives And Saves Taxpayers Money
Algorithms were supposed to make Virginia judges fairer. What happened was far more complicated
Since you asked: Is it me, or is the government releasing less data about the criminal justice system?
Patrisse Cullors, LA Reform Jails Tackle Mental Health, Mass Incarceration with Mental Health Matters Summit + Day Party
Los Angeles County Works to Transform Criminal Justice Through Collaboration
For My Incarcerated Clients, There Is No Winning
The Marshall Project, Oct. 17, 2019
Nearing His Legislative Deadline, Governor Newsom Signs 2 Dozen Crucial Criminal And Juvenile Justice Bills
Two Prosecutors Were Shaped by 1980s Los Angeles. Now They Have Opposing Views on Criminal Justice.
California Lawmakers Approve Ban of For-Profit Prisons and ICE Jails
Opinion: NYC Should Learn from LA Before Building New Jails
LA County May Soon Create A Civil Justice Defense Program To Address The Collateral Consequences Of Incarceration
Seattle Has Figured Out How to End the War on Drugs While other cities are jailing drug users, Seattle has found another way.
We asked 3 prisoners about the movement to give them voting rights
L.A. County Will Explore Possibility of Separating Youth from Probation
Gov. Newsom grants pardon to Susan Burton, who assists women returning to society after prison
Black Lives Matter Co-Founder Leads Campaign To Shut Down 'Death Trap' Jails In Los Angeles
We must stop sentencing people of color to death in Los Angeles County
The Daily News,
Priscilla Ocen, July 22, 2019
Across the country, people of goodwill increasingly recognize that death penalty is a racist, immoral system that is broken beyond repair. Yet, it appears that Los Angeles County has yet to get the message.
Governor Newsom Announces Regional Leaders & Statewide Experts who will Advise on Solutions to Combat Homelessness
Services for the Homeless in South LAKPCC’s Take Two with A Martinez
BSCC Board Awards $96m In Prop 47 Grants
America’s Growing Gender Jail Gap
Gov. Newsom’s Revised Budget Features Significant New Reform-Minded Criminal Justice Spending
L.A. County can safely release and treat thousands of mentally ill inmates. So do it
California at a Crossroads: Ending Youth Trauma by Closing Violent DJJ Institutions
Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice, March 20, 2019
In January, in one of his first acts as Governor, Gavin Newsom pledged to “end youth imprisonment in California as we know it” and called for a radical reorganization of the state’s troubled youth correctional system, the Division of Juvenile Justice (DJJ).
What Our Community Can Learn From Portugal’s Experience Decriminalizing Drugs
California bill to ease pathway for former inmates to become firefighters
After Incarceration, Former Prisoners Face a Tough Journey Home to Find Work, Reunite with Family and Begin Again
The next step for justice reform: Ending the ban on federal Pell Grants for eligible students behind bars
The Hill, 03/20/19
Rap Sheets Haunt Former Inmates. California May Change That.
Is It a Jail? Is It a Hospital? Vote of County Supervisors Exposes Chronic Confusion and Corruption
Justice not Jails, Feb. 17, 2019
By Peter Laarman
Changing the name from “Consolidated Care Treatment Facility” to “Mental Health Treatment Center” actually accomplishes very little and raises more questions than it answers. Read more
In landmark move, L.A. County will replace Men’s Central Jail with mental health hospital for inmates
By MAYA LAU
LATimes, FEB 13, 2019
Los Angeles County supervisors narrowly approved a plan Tuesday to tear down the dungeon-like Men’s Central Jail downtown and build at least one mental health treatment facility in its place.
Plan to create an L.A. County womens' jail in Lancaster faces serious opposition
LA TIMES By MAYA LAU JAN 08, 2019
A controversial women’s jail project that has been in development for years is now facing serious opposition from key stakeholders who are demanding more therapeutic alternatives for women in Los Angeles County’s criminal justice system. Read the article
L.A. County needs to seriously rethink the Mira Loma women's jail
By THE TIMES EDITORIAL BOARD
JAN 02, 2019
The criminal justice system was built for men — men’s bodies, men’s psyches, men’s problems. But the fastest-growing contingent of jail and prison inmates is women. They are housed in institutions not built with them in mind and are guarded by officers untrained to meet their needs and challenges. Read the editorial
Congress and President Trump Consider Bi-Partisan Criminal Justice Reform Legislation, The First Step Act,
Here's what it does: (From the Marshall Project)
Measure H Helped 10,000 Homeless People Into Permanent Housing, Officials Say
By NBC Channel 4, City News Service
A half-cent sales tax passed by Los Angeles County voters nearly two years ago to fund homeless programs has been a significant success...
Immigrants facing deportation, drug offenders and a former state lawmaker receive pardons from Gov. Jerry Brown
by John Myers and Jazmine Ulloa, Nov 21, 2018
MacArthur Foundation awards millions to cut jail populations
By Claudia Lauer, October 24, 201
By SAL RODRIGUEZ |OPINION | Orange County Register
July 2, 2018
The much-hyped Reducing Crime and Keeping California Safe Act of 2018 has failed to make the November 2018 ballot.
Prop. 47 Lessened Racial Disparities in Drug Arrests
Ballot Measure to Counteract the ‘War on Drugs’ Cut Arrests Across California
By Laura Kurtzman on June 21, 2018
Now, a study out of UC San Francisco has quantified the effects of the ballot measure, which was at the leading edge of a national movement to reduce incarceration rates and change the criminal justice approach to substance use disorders.
Fixing some of California's tough-on-crime mistakes of the past
San Diego Union Tribune
May 25, 2018
Who overpacked California’s prisons? It was first-term Gov. Jerry Brown, when he signed into law the Uniform Determinate Sentencing Act in 1976. And it was the Legislature’s Democratic majority, who’d sent Brown the act in the first place and then tried to outflank tough-on-crime Republicans by adding one sentence-lengthening provision (or “enhancement”) after another. Read more
Two Important editorials by the LA Times last month:
Marijuana is now legal in California. Continuing to punish prior offenders is cruel and unnecessary
Marijuana is now legal under California law, but hundreds of thousands of Californians have criminal records for possessing or selling the drug
Read the full editorial
Don’t let this Probation Department overhaul proposal sit on the shelf
By THE TIMES EDITORIAL BOARD
FEB 13, 2018
Read the full editorial
California's top court strikes down 50-year sentences for juveniles
By MAURA DOLAN
FEB 26, 2018
The California Supreme Court decided Monday that juveniles may not be sentenced to 50 years or longer in prison for kidnapping, rape and sodomy.
Slavery is alive and kickin'
Pacific Standard Magazine
LEE V. GAINES, NOV 27, 2017
Across the country, minor pot infractions disproportionately affect people of color. Newly enacted legislation in the Golden State is working to ease those penalties.
LA Times Editorial
NOV 20, 2017
One of the broken promises of the criminal justice system is that a person who completes felony time in prison or jail will leave with a clean slate and a chance to start over. It doesn't work that way. Liberty once lost is rarely fully restored...
Photographer Brian L. Frank captures the lives of men on the fire lines and at home in prison conservation camps.
In response, the state's fire agency, CALFIRE, has mobilized more than 11,000 firefighters.
Of those, 1,500 were inmates from minimum security conservation camps run by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, where they are trained to work on fire suppression and other emergencies like floods and earthquakes.
Published: October 30, 2017
SAN FRANCISCO – October 30, 2017 – A new research report released today from the Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice examines local trends in California’s property crime from 2010 through 2016, a period marked by major justice system reform, including Public Safety Realignment, Prop 47, and Prop 57 (read more)
By Bruce Western and Vincent Schiraldi | July 20, 2017
The Crime Report
In our nation’s expanding discussion about eliminating mass incarceration, advocates, researchers and the media are missing a major contributor to incarcerated populations and a partial deprivation of liberty in its own right.
Mass supervision through probation and parole. (read more)
Prop. 47 got thousands out of prison. Now, $103 million in savings will go towards keeping them out
June 9, 2017, SACRAMENTO, CA – Yesterday, the Board of State and Community Corrections (BSCC) announced $103 million dollars in grant awards for community diversion and treatment programs across California. Demonstrating the largest reallocation of prison budget funds to community-based programs, this is a historic opportunity for California to lead the way in ensuring effective treatment, diversion and reentry services for individuals most impacted by our criminal justice system.
The Morality of Government Spending: Who Decides What Gets Funded?
BY BRIAN BIERY
Budgets are moral documents. As a society, we demonstrate our values by what we spend our money on. So when governments draft budgets they show what is important to bureaucrats and politicians, but what if their perspectives are not aligned with the public? And how do we insert what we value into the process?
Survivors of Violent Crime Raise Their Voices in California to call for a new Approach to Criminal Justice
By JAZMINE ULLOA
APR 17, 2018
As the state has rolled back sentencing laws through legislation and voter initiatives, a growing victims' rights movement is pushing for alternatives to incarceration, with greater investment in rehabilitation services and a reevaluation of what it takes to make communities safe.
Preventing Community Spread of COVID-19 in Sites like Jails and Emergency Shelter
California’s State Juvenile Justice Agency Freezes New Detention Commitments
Why Hasn’t the Number of People in U.S. Jails Dropped?
Historic County-Community Partnership Takes The Vote Behind Bars In LA County
How Jackie Lacey’s and George Gascón’s time in office shapes the L.A. County D.A.'s race
Florida loses appeals court ruling on felon voting law
Debating Measure R:
5 arrested in $3.2 million Southern California sober living home fraud scheme
Sacramento Kings and Incarcerated Individuals Come Together For First NBA 'Play For Justice' Event at Folsom State Prison
2019 was the year L.A. County finally said ‘no’ to new jails
LA Times, By The Times Editorial Board
Dec. 26, 2019
California Is Letting Thousands of Prisoners Out Early. Its Housing Crisis Is Keeping Them From Starting Over.
Where Prisons Are A Last Resort
Appeals Court Upholds California’s Revamped Felony-Murder Accomplice Law
Los Angeles unveils first ever bridge housing project for trans women
Voter Registration Outreach - Getting Inside California Jails
Criminal justice reform targets court fines, fees
Parolees Help Battle Saddleridge Fire as Part of New Reentry Program in Ventura County
How Far Will California Take Criminal-Justice Reform?
Read the Story
A Visit with My (incarcerated) Mother
I Host a Popular Podcast. I’m Also in Prison.
September 26,2019, Rahsaan Thomas
Contra Costa to consider waiving certain court fees
September 13, 2019, By Annie Sciacca
The moratorium would include probation report fees, public defenders’ fees and fees for alternative custody programs such as electronic monitoring and work alternatives to jail. Fees would be waived for everyone, regardless of ability to pay.
Los Angeles County Votes To Stop Construction Of New Jail-Like Facility, Adding Momentum To National Abolition Movement
California Governor Promises More Changes to “Biased, Random” Justice System
Restoring Pell Grants To Prisoners Benefits Us All
Detroit Free Press
August 16, 2019, Greg Handel and Margaret diZerega
Reentry and Opportunity Center Improves Outcomes for Probation Clients
Why Los Angeles Could Be the Setting for the ‘Most Important D.A. Race’ in the U.S.
In Los Angeles, only people of color are sentenced to death
LA County Supes Expand Innovative Program Proven To Break The Wash, Rinse, Repeat Pattern Of Mental Illness, Incarceration, And Homelessness
Counties rarely collect fees imposed on those formerly jailed. So why keep charging them?
How Private Equity Is Turning Public Prisons Into Big Profits
21 more studies showing racial disparities in the criminal justice system
The Washington Post, April 9
By Radley Balko, Opinion writer
First major drug distribution company, former executives, criminally charged in opioid crisis
California Death Penalty Suspended; 737 Inmates Get Stay of Execution
NYTimes, By Tim Arango
March 12, 2019
Gavin Newsom’s death penalty moratorium could turn the abolitionist tide in California
By THE LA TIMES EDITORIAL BOARD
MAR 13, 2019
The Case for Expunging Criminal Records
Fed Up With Probation’s Ongoing Failure To Spend Juvenile Justice $ Millions On Proven Programs For LA County’s Kids, The Supes Make A Radical Move
Teaching in America’s prisons has taught me to believe in second chances
More mothers are ending up behind bars. Meeting the needs of their children is becoming a bigger priority
The next step for justice reform: Ending the ban on federal Pell Grants for eligible students behind bars
The Hill, 03/20/19
Police accountability in Los Angeles is heading backwards
1.5 million felons can now vote in Florida because of these men
California must double-down on prison rehabilitation
CALMatters Guest Commentary | Feb. 24, 2019 | By Adnan Khan
The State Auditor recently issued an audit of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation’s in-prison rehabilitation programs with a conclusion that these programs did not reduce recidivism rates. Read more
Anti-recidivism efforts falling short, audit says
Report suggests state prisons aren’t meeting ambitious goals on inmate rehabilitation.
Why California’s Default Mental Institutions Are Now Jails and Prisons
Justice Not Jails, Feb. 8, 2019 By Jocelyn Wiener
Read the article
Pepper Spray Is Used Too Often To 'Subdue Youth' In LA's Juvenile Justice System
Black women punished for self-defense must be freed from their cages
The Guardian, Thu 3 Jan 2019
Black women have always been vulnerable to violence in the US. We have to address the systemic and cultural issues that contribute to this...
Read the article
How the FIRST STEP Act Became Law - and What Happens Next
The making of a historic criminal justice reform bill
Brennan Center for Justice, January 4, 2019
Ames Grawert, Tim Lau
Last month, the FIRST STEP Act was signed into law - a major win for the movement to end mass incarceration. Read the article
Jerry Brown Becomes Most Forgiving Governor In Modern CA History
By CALmatters, News Partner | Dec 27, 2018
In keeping with eight years of holiday tradition, Gov. Jerry Brown issued 143 pardons this week. Since 2011, he has pardoned 1,332 inmates.
Prop. 47 spared offenders from prison, but they may find county jail harsher
San Francisco Chronicle Nov. 23, 2018, By Kerry Rudd
Why Is Karl Taylor Dead?
Our prisons are our mental wards. One fatal case in New York shows where that can lead.
The Marshall Project, By TOM ROBBINS, November 27, 2018
The Scanner: Alameda County to drop criminal justice fees; the problem with pot DUIs
In historic upset, Alex Villanueva beats incumbent Jim McDonnell in race for Los Angeles County sheriff
LA Times| NOV 26, 2018 | By MAYA LAU
Women Ignored in Incarceration Reform
Justice Not Jails, October 21, 2018
Women are the fastest-growing population in U.S. jails, but the effect this has on families has been largely ignored, a New York conference was told Wednesday.
Implementing long-term, meaningful solutions for women and families remain too few and far between, experts said at a three-person panel unveiling a new initiative aimed at reforming criminal justice system to better serve women.
The renewed fortunes and the hidden history of the for-profit prison industry.
Jim Crow’s Lasting Legacy At The Ballot Box
The Marshall Project
JENNIFER RAE TAYLOR 08.20.2018
Denying voting rights to people with felony convictions has roots in racist laws.
How young is too young for jail? California doesn't have an answer, but it should
LATimes Editorial Board, AUG 11, 2018
When is someone too young to go to jail? Even if it’s a juvenile jail or a so-called probation camp, surely such institutions are not the right place for 8-year-olds, no matter what crimes they may have committed. But how old is old enough? Is it 9? 10? What’s the age threshold for jail?
No, Prop 47 didn't de-criminalize misdemeanors
by THE LA TIMES EDITORIAL BOARD, JUL 18, 2018
Prisoners who risk their lives during Calif. wildfires shouldn't be shut out of profession
Katherine Katcher, Sonja Tonnesen and Neeraj Kumar, Opinion contributors Nov. 3, 2017
They are skilled. They sacrifice for $1 per hour. But once inmates finish their sentence, laws bar them from the job
To build, or not to build, a new L.A. County jail
By THE LATIMES EDITORIAL BOARD, June 16, 2018
Hundreds of people pack the Hollywood United Methodist Church on this blustery January evening to hear from Johnson and other leaders of JusticeLA, a group formed to fight what members are calling the planned expansion of the Los Angeles County jail system. Read more
04/21/2018 Asha Bandele of the Drug Policy Alliance interview on MIC:
"Prince could still be alive today if America didn’t shame people for using drugs." Asha talks about some of the things learned on a recent trip to Portugal. Members of LARRP were on that trip.
Inmates who learn trades are often blocked from jobs. Now something's being done.
NBC News May 26, 2018
Half the states bar ex-cons from getting the occupational licences they need to re-enter the workforce. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle say it doesn't make sense. Read more
Los Angeles Activists Join Delegation to Portugal March 19-22 to Learn from Country’s Groundbreaking Drug Decriminalization Policy
MEDIA ADVISORY FOR: March 19 – 22
CONTACT: Troy Vaughn, firstname.lastname@example.org
Voter Registration Makes Inroads in Unexpected Territory: County Jails
LA Times, FEB 26, 2018
By MICHAEL LIVINGSTON
Vice News Tonight Features LARRP, Drug Policy Alliance, Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles and Public Defenders Office Expungement Clinic
Don't Stop Now:
California Leads the Nation in Using Public Higher Education to Address Mass Incarceration - Will We Continue?
Scores of Californians have spent the past three years laboring to accomplish the unprecedented: bringing together our enormous criminal justice and public higher education systems to build a new generation of college students and graduates.
The reasons why are clear - higher education reduces recidivism, changes lives, and builds stronger communities. We can no longer consign incarcerated and formerly incarcerated men and women to ending their education with a GED; they, like all of us, deserve the opportunities that hard work and a college degree create.
This summary is in not exhaustive. Instead, we wanted to share a few media clips that illustrate the narrative we’ve been in over the past few years.
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