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, September 25, 2014

Kids For Cash: Inside One of the Nation’s Most Shocking Juvenile Justice Scandals | Democracy Now!

Kids For Cash: Inside One of the Nation’s Most Shocking Juvenile Justice Scandals | Democracy Now!

Please be disturbed by this. Today a special on "kids for cash," the shocking story of how thousands
of children in Pennsylvania were jailed by two corrupt judges who
received $2.6 million in kickbacks from the builders and owners of
private prison facilities. We hear from two of the youth: Charlie
Balasavage was sent to juvenile detention after his parents unknowingly
bought him a stolen scooter; Hillary Transue was detained for creating a
MySpace page mocking her assistant high school principal. They were
both 14 years old and were sentenced by the same judge, Judge Mark
Ciavarella, who is now in jail himself — serving a 28-year sentence.
Balasavage and Transue are featured in the new documentary, "Kids for
Cash," by filmmaker Robert May, who also joins us. In addition, we speak
to two mothers: Sandy Fonzo, whose son Ed Kenzakoski committed suicide
after being imprisoned for years by Judge Ciavarella, and Hillary’s
mother, Laurene Transue. Putting their stories into context of the
larger scandal is attorney Robert Schwartz, executive director of the
Juvenile Law Center. The story is still developing: In October, the
private juvenile-detention companies in the scandal settled a civil
lawsuit for $2.5 million.