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Petition statement to be delivered to The United States House of Representatives and The United States Senate

Reform the Criminal Justice System

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Reform the Criminal Justice System

To be delivered to The United States House of Representatives and The United States Senate

Petition Statement

For too long, the priorities of our criminal justice system have been backward.

We have valued punishment over rehabilitation for low-level, nonviolent crimes, and we have done so at the expense of public safety, human dignity, our budget, and the economic vitality of our communities and of our nation. We must fundamentally reevaluate our criminal justice system.

I ask you to put justice back in our criminal justice system by fundamentally reevaluating why and how we convict and incarcerate—and the best ways we can empower people who have been incarcerated to succeed once they rejoin society.
There are currently 1,168 signatures. NEW goal - We need 2,000 signatures!

Petition Background

My petition demands that Congress put justice back in our criminal justice system by fundamentally reevaluating why and how we convict and incarcerate -- and the best ways we can empower people who have been incarcerated to succeed once they rejoin society.

But criminal justice goes beyond just prisons. Since 1980, the number of people under community supervision -- either probation or parole -- has risen by more than 250%. More than 7 million people live under supervision of the criminal justice system.

Without programs to help offenders rehabilitate, reintegrate, and stay in touch with their families, offenders are more likely to reoffend and take another trip through this ineffective, revolving-door system that costs us $74 billion per year.

But more devastating are the impacts on the inmates' children and families. Not only do they lose the income and direct support from their incarcerated parents, but innocent children who have a parent in prison also suffer emotional trauma, social stigma, and destruction of their familial relationships.

We can do better, and we've started to in Newark with smarter reentry programs. But our cities and towns can't do this alone. The federal government must reform the system where it controls it, and support innovation at the local level.

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