Category: law enforcement

Cities Can Amplify Formerly Incarcerated Voices to Drive Justice Reform

This is a guest post form Ronald Simpson-Bey, who serves as the Director of Outreach and Alumni Engagement at JustLeadershipUSA. For any criminal justice reform policy to be truly effective, and for it to deliver the results that are long overdue — the decarceration and decriminalization of black and brown communities and communities experiencing poverty

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‘Madison Speaks’ Brings Police, Community Together

In March, several officers of the Madison, Wisconsin, Police Department (MPD) brought together a diverse group of community members to hear their ideas on increasing trust between law enforcement and the community. Captain John Patterson, currently assigned to Madison’s South Police District, adapted this event from the Orlando, Florida, “Orlando Speaks” initiative, which he learned

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Trump Administration Holds Law Enforcement Funding Hostage Over “Sanctuary” Issues

This week, despite continued urging by the National League of Cities and others, the Department of Justice (DOJ) is continuing to delay the disbursement of Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (Byrne JAG) funds for 2017. The reason? Those grants have become a bargaining chip in the DOJ’s escalating feud with so-called “sanctuary cities”. For

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Cities Are Working to Put Fewer People in Jail. Here’s Why.

Now is the time to prioritize the issue of mass jailing. This large financial burden jeopardizes public safety when low risk offenders are placed in jail, increasing their likelihood of reoffending.  Helping individuals reach stability through connections to treatment and community services decreases the likelihood of continued engagement in criminal activity. Arthur Rizer, Director of

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How “Qualified Immunity” Protects State and Local Officials

When it comes to “qualified immunity”, state and local governments have experienced a winning streak like no other. Since 1982, the Supreme Court has denied police officers qualified immunity in only two cases. In the last few years, the Supreme Court has reversed a handful of lower court cases denying police officers qualified immunity in

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MacArthur Foundation’s Safety and Justice Challenge Awards $11.3M to Local Sites

Jail misuse and overuse have taken a heavy toll on our communities. They have become warehouses for people with mental health and substance abuse issues — rather than a place for those who pose a flight risk or threat to public safety.  Local policy efforts and practices can contribute to the national movement to end mass incarceration.

Five Cities Will Join the Jails and Justice Technical Assistance Project

Jails open the “front door of mass incarceration,” and cities have opportunities to reduce the number of people entering jail. Cities can take measures such as providing local law enforcement with better tools and alternatives to arrest, supporting community-based alternatives to jails, and creating supports for people returning from incarceration. The NLC Institute for Youth,

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What Happened to DACA?

Since his presidency began, President Trump has set his sights on rolling back many of the actions of President Obama. At times, that task has proven easy — as with many federal regulations and executive orders. Other times, the opposition has been fierce. Enacted under Obama, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program allowed

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District Court Refuses to Reconsider Sanctuary Jurisdictions Ruling

The court rejected the weight the Department of Justice tried to place on the recent memo from Attorney General Jeff Sessions, concluding it is not likely a binding legal opinion. So, is the executive order currently enforceable? In April, a federal district court issued a nationwide preliminary injunction preventing the Trump Administration from enforcing the

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We Can Help Your City Put Fewer People in Jail

Should your city apply for a new technical assistance program to reduce the number of people going to jail? Here are ten questions to guide your decision. The past two decades’ rapid rise in jail populations has come at great short- and long-term expense to city governments. The increased use of jails has also failed

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