Bipartisan National and State Leaders to Discuss Needed Reforms to Florida’s Criminal Justice System on Jan. 28
TALLAHASSEE, FL– On Jan. 28, the Project on Accountable Justice at Florida State University will join with The James Madison Institute and the Coalition for Public Safety – the nation’s largest bipartisan criminal justice reform organization – to host a panel discussion at Florida State University College of Law that explores how advocates can build on bipartisan momentum to advance reforms to Florida’s justice system.
Florida has one of the highest rates of incarceration in the nation, but is at the bottom of the pack when it comes to justice reform. Policies that have resulted in over-incarceration and unnecessary spending are still on the books, even though research shows that these laws do nothing to protect the public or reduce crime.
Fair Sentencing & Fair Chances will explore these issues in a discussion moderated by former Attorney General Richard Doran and will feature former Attorney General Bob Butterworth, state Sen. Jeff Brandes, state Rep. Jose Javier Rodriguez, as well as a representative from ACLU’s Campaign for Smart Justice and researchers from Reason Foundation and the Urban Institute. The discussion will highlight why these policies were passed in the first place, the research that illustrates their ineffectiveness, and what needs to be done now to fix the problem.
“Florida is one of the single-most important states for enacting reform,” said Elizabeth Murphy, Director of Coalitions and Outreach at the Coalition for Public Safety. “Our local partners in the Sunshine State are prepared to bring attention to this important issue.”
The event is the fifth stop on the Fair Sentencing & Fair Chances National Tour, which was launched by the Coalition for Public Safety in September 2015 in Washington, D.C., highlighting efforts in states across the country to reform the justice system. The tour is based on the bipartisan agreements included in the Coalition’s Fair Sentencing & Fair Chances blueprint – a baseline of achievable reforms to reduce the prison population and to reduce the barriers facing those exiting the prison system to successfully reenter society and lead productive lives.
The event will be held Thursday, Jan. 28, 2016, at 6 p.m. at the Florida State University College of Law.