Mayor Signs Bill That Makes It Easier For Residents With Criminal Records To Find Work

Mayor Muriel Bowser has signed a bill passed unanimously by the DC Council called the Removing Barriers to Occupational Licensing for Returning Citizens Amendment Act of 2019. The new law bars occupational licensing boards withholding a license based on a criminal conviction, unless it is currently pending or “directly related” to the occupation. Boards will …


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, …


D.C. Council Judiciary Committee Advances Bill Giving More Young Offenders A Chance At Early Release

On Monday, Nov. 23, 2020, voted Monday to advance a number of bills, including measures to permanently ban ghost guns, strengthen D.C.’s “red flag” law, clarify how citizen initiative and referenda can get on the ballot, and give more young offenders the chance to petition for early release from prison, as reported by DCIST.com. Of …


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. …


Galen Baughman case gains support to overturn unjust civil confinement

Galen Baughman was one of the original organizers of what became the ReThink Justice DC Coalition, assisting Charlie Sullivan in forming and operating the group, when it was called the First Friday Group. He was the group’s first administrator, until his incarceration in Virginia three years ago based on a technical violation of his parole. …


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 …


Article: Advocates Want a D.C. Jail Resident to Run for an ANC Seat That’s Never Been Filled

As reported in the Washington City Paper, a coalition of local activists is pushing for D.C. Jail inmates to run as write-in candidates. Julie Johnson, a co-founder of Neighbors for Justice, says most jail inmates probably don’t know they’re eligible to run because ANC 7F07’s commissioner slot has never been filled. “A lot of people …


DCist article: Historic Designation Request Could Delay New D.C. Halfway House

The DCist published an article providing more information regarding the efforts by ANC 7F, the commission representing the neighborhood where CORE plans to open a new men’s halfway house, to oppose the site. ANC 7F has filed an application to designate the building at that address as a historic landmark. This halts CORE’s plans until …