[act-ma] 12/21 A Community Forum on the Proposed Three Strike Bill

Charlie Welch cwelch at tecschange.org
Mon Dec 5 10:46:22 PST 2011

From: Benjamin Thompson<thompsonfben at gmail.com>
A Community Forum on the Proposed Three Strike Bill for	Massachusetts

from Criminal Justice Policy Committee
[mailto:admin at cjpc.org]  Telephone (617) 697-4195

Wednesday, December 21st, 2011
6:00 - 8:00pm
African Episcopal Church
25 Cedar Street, Roxbury, MA 02119

Please join

Prof. Charles Ogletree,
Founder of the Charles H. Houston Institute on
Race and Justice, Harvard University School of

Robert Lewis, Jr.
Vice President Program, The Boston Foundation

Rev. Eugene Rivers
President and Founder, the Ella J. Baker House

Community Forum

The "Three Strikes" Legislation

Come hear how recent legislation passed in the
Massachusetts Senate (S2059) and House of
Representatives (H3818) will have a dramatic
impact on each of us and our communities


Professor Charles Ogletree


Robert Lewis Jr.

Rev. Eugene Rivers

Leslie Walker, Executive Director, Prisoner Legal

Charmane Higgins, Executive Director, STRIVE Inc.

Lyn Levy, Executive Director, SPAN Inc.


Benjamin Thompson, Executive Director, Criminal
Justice Policy Coalition

Please RSVP by December 16, 2011 to
admin at cjpc.org
[mailto:admin at cjpc.org].

Dear Friends:

At a recent meeting at a job training program for
ex-offenders I asked the class
  "how many of you have been convicted of two
  felonies and sentenced to either the
state or federal prison system". Several of the
young men raised their hands. One young man, no
older than 25, went on to state that although he
had two prior felony convictions for drugs, he
had never committed an act of violence. If this
young man, under the proposed Omnibus Crime bill,
were convicted of breaking and entering a motor
vehicle in the daytime, he would be eligible for
life in prison without parole, never having
physically harmed another person. If we assume
average life expectancy, he would probably spend
the next 40 years incarcerated at a minimum cost
of 1,880,000. He would never hold a job, pay
taxes, care for his children or contribute to
society. We as taxpayers would assume all costs.

On December 21st, 2011, The Ella J. Baker House
and the Criminal Justice Policy Coalition will
co-host a community informational forum in
response to recent legislation passed in the
Massachusetts Senate and House of Representatives
that will have a  dramatic impact on each of us.


With the recent passage of S2059 and H3818,
Massachusetts is preparing to pass "three
strikes" legislation as well as introduce changes
to our parole, probation and judiciary that will
increase the need for costly prison beds and
divert public tax dollars  away from needed
services. These changes will not
  reduce crime since there has  been no evidence-
based research to support the passage of this
draconian legislation. Instead this legislation
is a knee-jerk reaction from elected officials
designed  to appear hard on crime. We support
being hard on  crime but also demand that our
legislators be smart on crime.

There has been little debate on this legislation
(less than 24 hours of debate in the House of
Representatives) prior to the vote. There has
been no information on the social cost of
increasing incarceration under this proposed
legislation. Evidence based research has proven
that this legislation will not reduce crime or
improve  our recidivism rates.

Please join our distinguished panel members, the
Ella J. Baker House and the Criminal Justice
Policy Coalition for this community informational
forum on December 21st, 2011 from 6:00 - 8:00pm
at the African Episcopal Church,  25 Cedar
Street, Roxbury, MA 02119.


Benjamin F. Thompson
Executive Director


The Committee for Effective Public Safety (CEPS)
is recruiting community members
  interested in building strategies to lobby the
  upcoming conference committees on
S2059 and H3818. This will be recruitment only.
Training will follow at a later date

Privacy Policy:

Ben Thompson, Executive Director of the Criminal
Justice Policy Coalition  c/o Ella J. Baker House
  411 Washington St.
Jamaica Plain  MA  2124

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