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News Article Pheonix New Times February 1, 2011

Arizona Attorneys for Criminal Justice Release New Report on Sentencing Reform

Arizona Attorneys for Criminal Justice (AACJ) held a press conference this morning to announce the release of a report highlighting the need for sentencing reform. The study, conducted by Judith Greene of Justice Strategies, notes that the state's criminal justice policies have "been among the harshest in the nation for many years" -- and are no longer fiscally viable.

News Article Drug Truth Network January 16, 2011

Century of Lies

The failure of Drug War is glaringly obvious to judges, cops, wardens, prosecutors and millions more. Now calling for decriminalization, legalization, the end of prohibition. Let us investigate the Century of Lies.

News Article California Watch January 14, 2011

Number of children with parent in prison growing

When California lawmakers and policy wonks talk about reforming the state’s prison system, they’re typically talking about the public’s safety. Or how incarceration impacts the people living in cells. Or how expensive this whole exercise has become. Less often, the conversation is about those who lose a parent to a prison sentence. This week, Justice Strategies, a nonprofit research group, released a report on the nation’s swelling number of minor children with an incarcerated parent.

News Article The Final Call January 26, 2011

Who cares about children of the incarcerated?

CHICAGO (FinalCall.com) - Renee Y. Lee, recovery home director for The Women's Treatment Center, says people should be less judgmental and more circumspect in viewing the complex challenges associated with dealing with America's ever-growing prison population.

“What appears is not always what it is,” said Ms. Lee. “The causation for why a person commits a crime—although we won't exonerate them and let them off the hook completely—some of the time, it is related to an addiction and that is a factor. We as a society are responsible for one another.”

JS Publication February 7, 2011

Turning the Corner: Opportunities for Effective Sentencing and Correctional Practices in Arizona

On February 1, 2011, Arizona Attorneys for Criminal Justice, a statewide not-for-profit membership organization of criminal defense lawyers, law students and associated professionals, released Turning the Corner: Opportunities for Effective Sentencing and Correctional Practices in Arizona, a report prepared by Justice Strategies' Director Judy Greene. With a state corrections budget of $1 billion dollars threatening cuts to education and other important human services, Turning the Corner points Arizonians to important reforms in other states that have reduced prison populations while maintaining public safety.

The trend in state prison population reductions that began in 2005 included 24 states by 2009. However, Arizona's prison incarceration rate went from 1 in every 749 persons in 1980 to 1 in every 170 by the end of June 2008. Its average annual prison-population growth rate between 2000 and 2008 was 5.1 percent, compared to a national average of 1.5 percent, giving Arizona the third highest incarceration rate of all states and the highest in the West. Read more »

JS Publication January 12, 2011

Children on the Outside: Voicing the Pain and Human Costs of Parental Incarceration

Through expert analysis and first-hand testimony from children, parents and care-givers, Children on the Outside: Voicing the Pain and Human Costs of Parental Incarceration uncovers the devastating impact of parental incarceration on youth and the broader community and points to smart approaches to reduce prison populations and assist children. This new Justice Strategies report provides first-hand accounts of the harm experienced by some of the 1.7 million minor children with a parent in prison, a population that has grown with the explosion of the U.S. prison population.

When they do time we also do time. Just because we’re not in there doesn’t mean we don’t do time. Because you’re not with us, we also do time[.]

Araya, a teen girl with an incarcerated father. Read more »

News Article The New York Times November 10, 2010

Report Questions the System Used to Flag Rikers Island Inmates for Deportation

As the Obama administration steps up efforts to deport immigrants held on criminal charges, federal officials in New York City have long been on the job. At the city’s main jail on Rikers Island, immigration officers comb through lists of foreign-born inmates, then question, detain and deport about 3,200 of them a year.

News Article WNYC News November 10, 2010

Critics Question Department of Corrections' Relationship with Federal Immigration Authorities

For twenty years, Federal immigration officials have been stationed on Rikers Island. Critics say the Department of Corrections offers them too much assistance in identifying foreign-born non-citizens, some of whom end up in deportation proceedings. The practice came under fire Monday during a City Council hearing. Critics say all too often immigrants who are in detention, but have not been convicted of a crime, are reported to ICE, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

JS Publication November 12, 2010

New York City Enforcement of Immigration Detainers

Justice Strategies is conducting research for a forthcoming report on the combined impact of drug laws and immigration enforcement on jailers, prisoners and taxpayers. The New York City Department of Corrections provided Justice Strategies with a database of all discharges in 2008. We analyzed the dataset of noncitizen prisoners whose top charge is a drug-related offense.

Justice Strategies found that:

  • While Homeland Security purports to target the most dangerous offenders, there appears to be no correlation between offense level and identification for deportation.
  • In New York City, Homeland Security detainers are enforced in such a fashion as to effectively terminate the bail rights of certain pre-trial noncitizen prisoners.
  • Controlling for race and offense level, noncitizens with an ICE detainer spend 73 days longer in jail before being discharged, on average, than those without an ICE detainer.
News Article The Tennessean June 25, 2010

CCA may make some immigration prisons less jail-like

Eight Corrections Corporation of America detention centers that house asylum seekers and immigrants awaiting deportation may be line for makeovers to create a less prison-like feel.