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.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Governor Presents Crime Package

The money is not being funneled into the community for reentry services, if you read the proposal you will see that it is mostly going to the Department of Corrections for treatment inside the prison. There needs to be more in the community to help people to reintegrate and provide the services they need once they get out.

After William VanOstol got out of prison the second time, he said he found a way to never go back."It's easy to get lost and get back into an unhealthy lifestyle, but as long as you got resources, you can get over the hurdles of getting back into society because you got people there to help you,” he said.At the John Inman Work and Family Center, a re-entry program is helping him find work and hope."It's constant, intensive case management," said Nicole Lewis, a community re-entry specialist.She said the program is designed to help offenders with issues ranging from housing to mental health."We can help reduce the recidivism rate because they know to come back if life happens," she said.It's that type of program that would expand under the package that Gov. Bill Ritter, a former prosecutor, presented before the Colorado Criminal and Juvenile Justice Commission on Thursday."There is a group that I think will respond to substance abuse counseling, mental health services and assistance in improving their education level," said Ritter.He said the plan would improve public safety, while saving public dollars. He said his proposal to reduce the number of felons who commit new crimes and go back to jail could save taxpayers $380 million over five years, including $336 million by eliminating the need to expand a prison in Trinidad."We think we can do enough that ultimately we can avoid building a $360 million addition to a prison in Colorado," he said.But some law enforcement agents are concerned that may be jumping the gun."I don't know how how realistic those assumptions are," said John Suthers, Colorado's attorney general.
The Denver Channel


Anonymous said...

Well, Struthers, you and your prison guards/for profit prisons/unions/judges and attorneys that live off this system do not want it to change. If you stop building massive prisons to warehouse people and put more money into true corrections, you can force the system to change for the better.

Just say NO to building more prisons that cost far more to operate than Ritter is proposing for rehab services. I think one third of all prisoners have little hope of ever returning to society. The other two thirds are drug users and mental cases that can be treated. We have to solve the major segregation and gang problems in our prisons.
We cannot solve it with a majority of prison guards that come to work with the wrong attitudes. We also need to discipline the cops, judges and attorneys who constantly lie to get notches on their belts and in their resumes.mpc

Anonymous said...

I agree with MPC. His assertions are accurate. I will take it a step further. There are some people in the ranks of the judges, attorneys, cops and the entire attitude of the DOC needs to change. The IG needs to do rigorous investigations into the wrong doings by prison guards and officers and John Suther needs to step aside as far as corrctions issues are concerned. He has a conflict of interest and is responsible for some of whats wrong. Remember he was the head of Corrections before he became attorney general.djw

Anonymous said...