US Marijuana Party

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Sentencing Reform in Alabama

From the Drug Policy Alliance

Alabama’s overcrowded prisons and jails have become a public safety and public health crisis. A system designed for under 13,000 people now holds almost 30,000, many of them low-level drug offenders - and the problem is only getting worse. One major problem is that many people who could be paroled or given probation are instead kept in overcrowded cells. Additionally, many people are incarcerated for simple technical violations of their parole or probation – though they have already paid their debt to society, they can end up back in prison because of something as simple as arriving late for a meeting with a parole officer.

A bill has been introduced that would correct this problem by reducing parole periods, which now are sometimes as long as 15 years! SB 365 would create a two-year limit on the length of parole unless the state could show a reason why the person should remain on parole - for example, if termination of parole would pose a serious risk to public safety.

The bill is coming up for a vote in the Senate soon, and Senators need to hear that their constituents support fixing these failed laws that waste both limited tax dollars and human lives. You can play an important role in reform by contacting your Senator to urge him or her to support SB 365.

Get Busy Alabama!!


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