Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.


Sunday, March 16, 2008

The Population Of America's Prisons

The United States prison population is out of control. Minimalist efforts such as alternatives to incarceration and parole reform may be politically palatable, but they will have no significant effect.

The real magnitude of this issue can best be grasped through comparison with incarceration rates in Western Europe. The United States incarceration rate is five times that of Britain or Spain. If we reduced our prison population in half, then in half again, and finally in half again, we would have fewer than 300,000 men, women and children in our prisons and jails, rather than 2.3 million, yet our incarceration rate would still be greater than that of Germany and France.

The only way to meaningfully reduce our prison population is to decriminalize drug use and provide drug substitution and treatment to those in need. A national program of harm reduction is the only way to reverse what you have aptly described as a “Prison Nation.”

Robert L. Cohen
New York, March 11, 2008


Click here to read more letters at NY TIMES LETTERS

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