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, March 27, 2009

Deal Struck On Rockefeller Drug Laws

The New York Post

ALBANY - Gov. Paterson and legislative leaders announced a deal this morning on a drug law overhaul that would divert thousands of offenders from prison to treatment - a move Republicans charged would lead to increased crime.

The agreement - the broadest attack on the strict Rockefeller drug laws since 2004 - would give judges broad discretion to send first-time drug offenders to treatment, a key element of a proposal passed by Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan) earlier this month.

Under the compromise with Paterson and Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith (D-Queens), judges would also have the power to send low-level repeat drug offenders to treatment, although mid-level repeat offenders would still have to face some prison time, sources familiar with the talks said.

Defendants eligible for treatment would have to plead guilty to avoid a stint behind bars.

"We are hoping to forever eliminate the regime of the Rockefeller drug laws and replace it with a system that will give addicts the treatment that they need and give those who profiteer off drug trafficking the punishment that they deserve," the Democratic governor said.