AS GOV. LEE DEBUTS FIRST STATE OF THE STATE, BREAKING NEW POLL SHOWS OVERWHELMING SUPPORT FOR BOLD CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM AGENDA

Syrita Bowen News, Press, Tennessee

Poll Shows Tennesseans Stand Behind Key Planks of Governor’s Agenda; 91% Say Main Goal of Tennessee’s Criminal Justice System Should be Rehabilitation (Nashville, TN) – Hours before Governor Bill Lee’s first State of the State address, where he’s expected to announce criminal justice reform will be a focus of his first year in office, the Justice Action Network, ACLU-TN, and Right on Crime announced overwhelmingly positive polling results for some critical reforms expected in his address. This survey of 500 registered Tennessee voters, conducted between February 19-21, revealed overwhelming bipartisan voter support for various criminal justice reform measures in Tennessee. Key to this agenda are rehabilitation and second chance legislative measures. …

WATCH: Justice Action Network Releases Short Film on Rehabilitative Programming Opportunities in Tennessee’s Prisons and Jails

Syrita Bowen News, Press, Tennessee

Prioritizing Workforce Development Reduces Recidivism and Improves Public Safety Nashville, TN – Today, the Justice Action Network (JAN), the largest bipartisan organization working to reform the justice system at the state and federal level, premiered a short film highlighting the rehabilitative, educational, and workforce development opportunities in Tennessee’s prisons and jails before the Tennessee House Judiciary Committee. The production, filmed inside the Turney Center Industrial Complex and Nashville’s Correctional Development Center, features interviews with those currently incarcerated, lawmakers, sheriffs, program officers, and others who are working to equip individuals with skills and opportunities to improve their chances of employment upon release. At a time when the Tennessee Legislature and Governor …

ARKANSAS LEADS ON CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM AS CRUCIAL CIVIL ASSET FORFEITURE MEASURE FLIES THROUGH STATE SENATE WITH UNANIMOUS BIPARTISAN VOTE

Syrita Bowen Arkansas, News, Press

Senate Bill 308 Protects Property Rights, Strengthens Due Process (LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS) – Once again, Arkansas continues to lead on criminal justice reform, as the Arkansas Senate voted unanimously on a bipartisan basis to pass the Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform Act of 2019 (Senate Bill 308). The bill will overhaul the state’s civil asset forfeiture laws to ensure that innocent citizens are not forced to forfeit their property without due process of law. This legislation is championed by Senate Majority Leader Bart Hester (R-1) and Representative Austin McCollum (R-95).  Under Senate Bill 308, no property will be forfeited by the government unless there is a related criminal conviction, with certain exceptions.  “While forfeiture is an important tool for law enforcement to …

CIVIL ASSET FORFEITURE REFORM WINS APPROVAL FROM ARKANSAS SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE

Syrita Bowen News, Press

Senate Bill 308 Protects Property Rights, Strengthens Due Process   (LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS) – Today, the Arkansas Senate Judiciary committee voted to advance the Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform Act of 2019 (Senate Bill 308). The bill passed the committee with a unanimous, bipartisan vote. The bill will overhaul the state’s civil asset forfeiture laws to ensure that innocent citizens are not forced to forfeit their property without due process of law. This legislation was championed by Senate Majority Leader Bart Hester (R-1) and Representative Austin McCollum (R-95). Under Senate Bill 308, no property will be forfeited by the government unless there is a related criminal conviction, with certain exceptions.  “While forfeiture is an important tool for law …

PRESIDENT TRUMP SIGNS MAJOR, HISTORIC CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM BILL INTO LAW

Syrita Bowen News, Press

Years in the Making, The First Step Act Marks A Rare Bipartisan Victory Addressing The Broken Federal Criminal Justice System Justice Action Network’s Holly Harris: “The passage of this bill is a Christmas miracle.” (Washington, DC) – Today, history was made when President Trump signed historic criminal justice reform legislation, the First Step Act, into law. The measure, which has been years in the making, is the most comprehensive criminal justice reform ever passed by both chambers of U.S. Congress. The bipartisan legislation received overwhelming support from Members of Congress in an era of strict partisanship, finally passing the U.S. Senate with a vote of 87-12 and the U.S. House …