Criminal Legal System Reform

Reducing the impact of an unfair criminal system. 

The criminal system is a prime driver of inequality in the United States. We’re fighting at all levels, using structural litigation, non-litigation advocacy and direct services, to reduce the impact of our discriminatory criminal system.

Addressing the conditions of incarceration. Persons confined to prisons, jails, immigration detention and other criminal system institutions are confronted with unique and particularly cruel form of state power. As long as mass incarceration is a fact, the need for prisoners’ rights advocacy will be essential.

Reducing unnecessary and discriminatory contact with the criminal system and its effects. Race bias is deeply embedded in each criminal system component, including in police departments, prosecutor offices, courts, prisons, the laws themselves, and the effects of collateral consequences.  These effects are significant whether they result in long-term incarceration, crushing court-imposed financial obligations (debtors’ prisons) or barriers to employment, education or housing after a period of incarceration.

Case Study
Ending a Crisis for Mentally Ill Prisoners

The Administrative Maximum (ADX) Facility in Florence, Colorado is the highest security prison in the federal prison system. This supermax prison engages in extreme forms of isolation.

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