2017 POLICY ADVOCACY PRIORITIES
 

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Governor Brown Signs Historic Package of Criminal Justice Reform Legislation
Dear Supporters,

We are thrilled to inform you that Governor Jerry Brown has signed into law a series of bills that will significantly improve public safety and bring hope to thousands of incarcerated men, women and their loved ones across California. ARC Founder and President Scott Budnick recognized the significance of these bills, saying, “[t]hese smart-on-crime bills, many [of which] passed with a bipartisan vote, embrace the concepts of public safety, accountability and redemption.”

ARC co-sponsored four of these measures (SB 190, SB 312, SB 394 and SB 395), and worked hard alongside extraordinary advocates throughout the state to educate legislators about the importance of these specific justice reforms and other critical pieces of legislation. In the process of walking the halls of the State Capitol to advocate for these measures, ARC members demonstrated what is possible when you provide hope and invest in human life. We believe that these living examples of rehabilitation and redemption had a huge positive impact on legislators and Governor Brown.
SB 190 will end the harmful, unlawful, and costly assessment and collection of administrative fees against families with youth in the juvenile system. SB 312 would restore a youth’s ability to seal a juvenile court record, and therefore increase their chances of finding and maintaining stable employment and other critical opportunities. SB 394 would give individuals serving life without parole for crimes they committed as young people under 18 years-old the opportunity to have a parole hearing after 25 years of incarceration. SB 395 would safeguard young people’s rights under the United States and California Constitutions by requiring that youth under 15 consult with counsel prior to waiving their Miranda rights.
 
These bills build upon our previous advocacy work in providing second chances to young people in the system, and now serve as a foundation for extending the conversation of hope and redemption to those who were young adults when they entered the system. “California’s children and youth deserve the hope and opportunities these new laws will give them,” says Human Rights Watch Children’s Rights Division Senior Advocate Elizabeth Calvin.
This is an exciting time for justice reform work in California.  We are enthusiastic about the ways in which opportunities for redemption are being spread throughout California’s prison system.  The enactment of these bills also places California at the forefront of this reform work nationwide.  “Our futures are all bound, and California's leadership on this issue can benefit the state while helping guide the country,” commented Bryan Stevenson, Equal Justice Initiative Founder and Executive Director.
While helping to fight for the dignity of incarcerated individuals, we are continuously inspired by the strength of your support.  Whether through volunteering your time, providing your expertise, or serving as mentors to our members, you let us know each day that you are deeply committed to helping to heal families throughout the state.
 
We look forward to your continued support in 2018 and beyond as we work to heal our communities in California and around the county.   
 
Click here to view, Governor Brown’s press release describing the criminal justice bills he signed into law yesterday!
Copyright © 2017 Anti-Recidivism Coalition, All rights reserved.

Legislative bills ARC CO-SPONSOred in 2017

During this legislative session, ARC is collaborating with several advocacy organizations to provide support with advocacy efforts for the following reform measures:
 

SB 10/SB 42 (Hertzberg/Bonta) – The California Bail Reform Act (the Act) will ensure that people are not held in dangerous, overcrowded jails after an arrest simply because they cannot afford to post bail. The effect of the Act will be to ensure that people return to court as required and that the public is protected, while ending the current bail system’s cruel discrimination against low-income Californians and people of color. Click here to learn more.

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SB 190 (Lara/Mitchell)  This measure will end the harmful, unlawful, and costly assessment and collection of administrative fees against families with youth in the juvenile system. This bill will foster youth rehabilitation and the reentry of youth into their families and communities. Click here to learn more.

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SB 312 (Skinner) - This measure would restore a youth’s ability to seal a juvenile court record involving a past WIC Section 707 (b) listed offense committed at age 14 or older, and therefore allow these Californians to go on to lead productive lives without suffering the negative employment, educational, housing and other economic exclusions and social exclusions. Click here to learn more.

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SB 394 (Lara/Mitchell) – This measure would bring California law into compliance with the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision in Montgomery v. Louisiana (2016), and give individuals serving life without parole for crimes they committed as youths under 18 years-old the opportunity to work for parole. Click here to learn more.

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SB 395 (Lara/Mitchell) - This measure would safeguard young people’s rights under the United States and California Constitutions by requiring that youth under 18 consult with counsel prior to waiving their Miranda rights. This will preserve youth’s constitutional rights and protects the integrity of our criminal justice system. Click here to learn more.

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SB 439 (Lara / Mitchell) – This measure would establish a minimum age for prosecution in juvenile court in California, protecting children under 12 years old from the harms and adverse consequences of justice system involvement and encouraging more effective alternatives to court involvement. Click here to learn more.

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SB 620 (Bradford) - This measure would allow a court, in the interest of justice and at the time of sentencing, to strike a sentence enhancement for using or discharging a firearm when a person is convicted for committing a felony, consistent with other enhancements. Click here to learn more.

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Legislative bills ARC supported in 2017

SB 142 (Beall) – would encourage judges to consider community mental health treatment during sentencing. SB 142 also re-invests savings from reduced prison costs into effective community-based services with incentives to create a positive cycle of effective treatment and reduced crime. Click here to learn more.

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SB 143 (Beall) - would allow people confined to a state mental hospital to reenter the community for treatment. By allowing equal access to Proposition 36 (2012) and Proposition 47 (2014), this population would be able to access community mental health centers and other support networks. If the person is found to no longer be a danger to public safety, then community treatment would allow them more treatment options and access to their natural support systems such as family and friends. Click here to learn more. 

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SB 180 (Mitchell) - would free-up funds for community-based treatment programs and community investment, generally, by repealing the three-year sentence enhancement for prior drug convictions. Click here to learn more.

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AB 90 (Weber) – would address accuracy and fairness in the collection and accessing of gang allegations through CalGang and other shared gang databases, including enacting reforms outlined in the 2016 audit of shared gang databases released by the California State Auditor. Click here to learn more.

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AB 864 (McCarty) - would allow the Executive Director at the California Conservation Corps (CCC) to consider applications to the CCC from individuals 18-25 years old who are on probation. Click here to learn more.

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AB 1008 (McCarty) - would prohibit employers from inquiring into or reviewing a job applicant’s conviction history until after that applicant has received a conditional offer. This bill would also clarify the standards an employer must apply when considering an applicant’s conviction history. Click here to learn more.

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AB 1058 (Gipson) - will authorize a waiver of the $46 / unit community college student fee for youth who are younger than 25 years-old and are former wards of the juvenile court and were placed in out-of-home care in connection with that status after reaching 16 years-old. Click here to learn more.

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AB 1114 (Garcia) - strengthen the Supervised Population Workforce Training Grant Program established by AB 2060 (V.M. Perez) in 2014.  Investing in workforce development opportunities for reentry populations is a critical step towards expanding their access to well-paying jobs and careers, reducing recidivism rates, improving community safety, and generating overall net state savings.  AB 1114 makes adjustments to the Supervised Population Workforce Training Program to expand the eligible target population to include people on parole, require applicants to include a partnership with a community based organization that works with the reentry population, authorize multi-year grant allocations, and strengthen the prioritization of work-based learning activities. Click here to learn more.

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AB 1308 (Stone) - would require the Board of Parole Hearings to conduct youth offender parole hearings for people sentenced to state prison who committed those specified crimes when they were 25 years of age or younger.  This would essentially extend SB 261 from age 23 to 25. Click here to learn more.

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AB 1448 (Weber) - which will codify the existing Elderly Parole Program, granting continued and formalized parole consideration to individuals ages 60 and older who have been incarcerated for at least 25 years. Click here to learn more.