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.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Americans Oppose Mandatory Minimums --FAMM

Here's the press release that goes with FAMM's new poll on mandatory minimums:

Press Release
Sept. 24,2008
Contact: Monica Pratt Raffanel media@famm.org

NEW POLL: Americans Oppose Mandatory Minimums,
Will Vote for Candidates Who Feel the Same

WASHINGTON, D.C. – A new poll released today by Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM) shows widespread support for ending mandatory minimum sentences for nonviolent offenses and that Americans will vote for candidates who feel the same way.

• Fully 78 percent of Americans (nearly eight in 10) agree that courts – not Congress – should determine an individual’s prison sentence.
• Six in 10 (59 percent) oppose mandatory minimum sentences for nonviolent offenders.
• A majority of Americans (57 percent) polled said they would likely vote for a candidate for Congress who would eliminate all mandatory minimums for nonviolent crimes.

“Politicians have voted for mandatory minimum sentences so they could appear ‘tough on crime’ to their constituents. They insist that their voters support these laws, but it’s just not true,” says Julie Stewart, president and founder of FAMM. “Republicans and Democrats support change and that should encourage members of Congress to reach across the aisle next year and work together to reform mandatory minimums. Mandatory sentencing reform is not a partisan issue, but an issue about fairness and justice that transcends party lines.”

During a time of financial crisis and uncertainty in the United States, reviewing current criminal justice policies and reforming mandatory minimums for nonviolent drug offenders is an option that Democratic and Republican lawmakers are considering. Although neither is endorsing FAMM’s poll or report, Senator Jim Webb (D-Va.) and Rep. Bob Inglis (R-S.C.) are both concerned about America’s prison and sentencing system.

“America is locking up people at astonishing rates. In the name of ‘getting tough on crime,’ there are now 2.2 million Americans in federal, state, and local prisons and jails and over 7 million under some form of correction supervision, including probation and parole. We have the largest prison population in the world,” says Senator Jim Webb (D-Va.), who is chairing a symposium on criminal justice and prison issues in October. “This growth is not a response to increasing crime rates, but a reliance on prisons and long mandatory sentences as the common response to crime. It is time for America’s leadership to realize what the public understands – our approach is costly, unfair and impractical.”



Anonymous said...

its became a buisnesws because of the Corporate prisons, while our constitution says youannot incarcerate people for profit!!! Does any one ever read the constitution??? djw

Anonymous said...

My daughter is currently incarcerated in Oregon under the mandatory minimum sentencing laws. She got 70 months for being with the wrong people at the wrong time. She got involved in a home invasion and assault that she didn't even know what going down. First offense. She was the only legal US citizen. The case got a lot of publicity and she was made an example of. Child abusers are coming into prison with less time. Homicides are coming in with less time. It's aggravating.

She was involved with meth at the time. So I guess we are calling this an intervention.

Anonymous said...