Article: DC Statehood and the Criminal Legal System

Co-chair of the DC Reentry Task Force, Louis Sawyer, was featured in this Washington Post article. He spoke of how his family took 14-hour road trips to visit him in federal prison in southwestern Virginia, until he was moved to a prison too far away for them to continue their visits.

Rep. Norton Introduces Congressional Legislation for Returning Parole and Supervised Release to District Control

What Happened The federal Revitalization Act of 1997 and subsequent legislation placed the management of the parole function under a federal agency, the U.S. Parole Commission (USPC). This past November, Congress authorized the elimination of the U.S. Parole Commission (USPC) in November 2020. This opened the door to returning these functions to District control. Now, …

Guest Editorial: What Entity Should Be Used for Local Control of the District’s Parole Function?

Author: Phil Fornaci This post provides a concise summary of the background of this issue and answers key questions about this issue such as: What Should Happen Next?, How Do We Get There?, and Why Not Just let D.C. Superior Court Judges Replace the USPC?. It was taken from a recent memo written by Mr. …

D.C. data shows how minor supervision violations contribute to excessive jailing

Prison Policy Initiative has published a report–using D.C. as a case study–to show how much non-criminal – and often drug related – “technical” violations of probation and parole contribute to unnecessary jail incarceration. From their report: “In the nation’s capital, the scope of the problem is conspicuous. The Washington, D.C. Department of Corrections estimates that …

ReThink Justice and Reentry Task Force Report – Principles for a Parole Entity

There is a new report titled Establishing Principles for the Creation of a Local Paroling Authority in Washington, D.C. published today with this post.  This was developed as a joint effort between the ReThink Justice DC Coalition and the DC Reentry Task Force. The report lays out 19 principles that a new local parole function, …

ReThink Justice Report – Local Control of Parole Timeline

Local advocates have been calling for the parole function to be returned to District control for many years. The ReThink Justice DC Coalition’s New Visions Committee has been one of the groups deeply involved in this advocacy.

Mayor Bowser Endorses Local Control of Parole and Two-year US Parole Commission Update

In a letter to Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton dated July 5, 2020, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser publicly endorsed, for the first time, the District taking over the parole function from the US Parole Commission (USPC). Mayor Bowser asked Rep. Norton to take action in Congress to extend the USPC’s authorization for two years after it …

Local Control of Parole Clergy Letter Sent to DC Council and Mayor

The ReThink Justice DC Coalition participant Julie Petersmeyer, organized 46 local clergy to sign on to a letter sent to the DC City Council and Mayor Bowser. Titled Faith Leaders in support of Restoring Local Control Over Parole in the District of Columbia, the letter calls on the Council to take action to bring the …

ReThink Justice New Visions Committee Testimony on Local Control of Parole to DC Council

The ReThink Justice New Visions Committee has been very active advocating to get the District government to move for without delay to take action to assume control of the parole function which now rests with the United States Parole Commission (USPC). Malcolm Young, Co-Chair, New Visions Committee, with the assistance of other committee participants, submitted testimony …