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.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Colorado's War On Drugs A Fiscal Disaster

My good friend Mike Krause on Huff Post
Huffington Post
Colorado lawmakers' long-running devotion to the War on Drugs has helped push state prison spending to unsustainable levels. In the meantime, illicit drugs remain readily available throughout the state. This year, the Colorado Commission on Criminal and Juvenile Justice (CCJJ) has broken down into several sub-groups including a Drug Policy Task Force, to take a hard look at the state's drug laws and sentencing policies.
This is an excellent opportunity for fiscal conservatives to take the lead in bringing some much needed scrutiny and restraint to corrections spending in Colorado.

In 1992, Colorado lawmakers surrendered their prerogative to write the state's criminal law and enacted the Uniform Controlled Substances Act, written by drug war bureaucrats in Washington, D.C., and designed to bring state drug laws in to conformity with federal drug laws. The act, among many other things, created numerous new drug offenses, and sentencing enhancements for those offenses.

And the result?

Over the last several decades, the percentage of inmates whose most serious sentencing offense is a drug offense has quadrupled to around 20 percent of Colorado's prison population. Drug offenders are by far the single largest category of new admissions to Colorado prisons at around 23 percent of annual admissions.
There are more drug offenders in Colorado prisons today than the entire prison population 25 years ago when the state's inmate population was around 3,500.

Given this, you might think a drug-free Colorado is close at hand. You would be wrong.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The fact that the more preassure put on drug enforcement the larger illegal drugs becomes tells me that our officials are pushing the level of public safety danger out of sight. Innocent people are being caught in the middle all the time.
If the government would stop the dam war on drugs and legalize drugs all the drug lords would go away and all the crime and killings would stop. Also the state would benefit from the new tax scource. djw