The Fortune Society News Of The Week — the week of November 3, 2014

Friday, November 7, 2014

A wide-ranging collection of news and opinion from the previous week focusing on criminal justice policy, advocacy, and reform.


California Just Became The First State To Defelonize Drug Use

On Tuesday, Californians voted in favor of the criminal justice reform initiative that promised to thin out the state’s saturated prisons by reducing six classifications of nonviolent drug and theft-related crimes from felonies to misdemeanors …

http://www.vice.com/read/california-just-became-the-first-state-to-de-felonize-drug-use-1105

———

NYPD Halts Marijuana “Buy-And-Busts”

The NYPD has killed the marijuana “buy-and-bust.” The crime-fighting staple that often led to gun seizures and arrests on outstanding warrants was axed in a desperate attempt by the de Blasio administration to regain dwindling support …

http://nypost.com/2014/11/05/nypd-halts-marijuana-buy-and-busts/

———

NYPD Picks Former Obama Appointee For First Deputy Following Philip Banks’ Retirement

A 63-year-old NYPD deputy commissioner with ties to the Obama administration has been named Police Commissioner Bratton’s new second in command.  Benjamin Tucker will replace Bratton’s first choice, Philip Banks, who surprised …

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/nypd-taps-obama-appointee-deputy-article-1.2000147

———

Minority Leaders Blast de Blasio Over NYPD Upheaval

Mayor de Blasio faced a bigger crisis than just the abrupt resignation of the city’s highest-ranking black cop as minority leaders blasted his handling of the NYPD and warned of political consequences. “The mayor leads the city, not …

http://nypost.com/2014/11/04/minority-leaders-blast-de-blasio-over-nypd-upheaval/

———

Opinion: Bratton’s Burden — NYPD Brass Must Include All

The abrupt resignation of the NYPD’s highest ranking African-American commander obligates Commissioner Bill Bratton to once more assure New York that the department’s top ranks will include powerful blacks and Hispanics …

http://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/editorial-bratton-burden-article-1.1995035

———

Opinion: The Shake-Up at Rikers Island

Violence and corruption became entrenched at Rikers because officers who ignored or condoned that culture were moved up the ladder into management. Mayor de Blasio’s correction commissioner continued that practice …

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/11/04/opinion/the-shake-up-at-rikers-island.html?smid=nytcore-ipad-share&smprod=nytcore-ipad

———

Holder, In Brooklyn, Pushes For More Alternatives To Prison

The push for more alternatives to incarceration has become a top issue for the U.S. AG Eric Holder as he enters his final months in office; he’s held several events urging different paths for those arrested than traditional prison terms …

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/10/31/nyregion/holder-in-brooklyn-pushes-for-more-alternatives-to-prison.html?smid=nytcore-ipad-share&smprod=nytcore-ipad

———

Opinion: New Sentencing Guidelines Could Shorten Drug Sentences For Tens Of Thousands Of People In Federal Prison

On Nov. 1, changes to federal drug sentencing guidelines took effect and courts may begin considering petitions from incarcerated individuals for sentencing reductions. Thousands who are serving long, punitive sentences could …

http://www.theweedblog.com/sentencing-guidelines-drug-sentences-federal-prison/

———

$2.25 Million Settlement For Family Of Rikers Inmate Who Died In Hot Cell

The family of a homeless veteran who died this year in a searing hot cell at Rikers will receive $2.25 million from the City of New York. The settlement was made with unusual swiftness, a reflection on the extraordinary pressure on the city to …

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/11/01/nyregion/settlement-for-family-of-rikers-inmate-who-died-in-overheated-cell.html?smid=nytcore-ipad-share&smprod=nytcore-ipad

———

Homelessness Rose in New York

The number of homeless living on the streets and in shelters across the country fell this year but, in NYC, the homeless population continued to grow, swelling in almost every category — individuals, families, and the chronically homeless …

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/10/31/nyregion/homelessness-rose-in-new-york.html?smid=nytcore-ipad-share&smprod=nytcore-ipad

———

Could NYC’s Immigration Reform Spark A Federal Crackdown?

The City Council passed two reform bills that will significantly limit cooperation among the NYPD, correctional agencies, and federal immigration authorities. But while advocacy groups welcome the new laws, there’s also concern …

http://gothamist.com/2014/10/29/reforms_might_spur_immigration_offi.php

———

We Need An Accounting Of America’s Innocent Prisoners

A recent study found that wrongful death row convictions are higher than previously thought, with a conservative estimate that 4% of the roughly 3,000 prisoners languishing on death row across America — at least 120 people — are innocent …

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-a-love/we-need-an-accounting-of-_b_6065452.html?utm_hp_ref=crime&ir=Crime

———

Major Police Group: Mandated Treatment Can Help Some Mentally Ill

The International Association of Chiefs of Police approved a resolution
calling for greater use of mandated treatment, commonly known as assisted
outpatient treatment (AOT). Research shows that AOT reduces arrest …

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dj-jaffe/major-police-group-use-as_b_6065298.html?utm_hp_ref=crime&ir=Crime

———

Inner-City Violence In The Age Of Mass Incarceration

Why is it some neighborhoods, from the south side of Chicago to the north side of Philadelphia, still endure so much collective distress? Might there be something about these particular neighborhoods that make them more prone to violence …

http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2014/10/inner-city-violence-in-the-age-of-mass-incarceration/382154/

———

Break The Cycle Of Mass Incarceration

When politicians want to show their constituents they’re concerned about their safety and well-being, they’ll say that they’re “tough on crime.” It’s an easy enough position to take. Nobody likes crime. But the reality …

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/steven-w-hawkins/break-the-cycle-of-mass-i_b_6094986.html

———

Why Isn’t Prison Justice On The Ballot?

Criminal justice reform has wide bipartisan support — in theory. But until voters demand it, politicians will continue to ignore an embarrassing system. Whichever party wins control of the U.S. Senate, voters can wince at the prospect of …

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/11/01/why-isn-t-prison-justice-on-the-ballot-this-tuesday.html

———

Georgia Governor Courts Black Voters, Testing Larger GOP Strategy

Georgia governor Nathan Deal is fighting for his political life, reaching out to the state’s growing share of African-American voters — about 30% of the electorate — by touting his ambitious overhaul of Georgia’s criminal justice system, which has …

http://news.yahoo.com/georgia-governor-fights-for-black-votes–testing-larger-gop-strategy-192123307.html

———

Former Inmate-Turned-Activist Discusses Struggles Of Life Outside Of Prison

In 1969, Dorsey Nunn was sentenced to life in prison for killing a man. After serving 12 years, he was paroled. On the outside, he realized there was little help for him or people like him to make new lives. He took matters into his own hands and …

http://kalw.org/post/former-inmate-turned-activist-discusses-struggles-life-outside-prison

———

Oregon Ex-Con, Now Earning A Ph.D., Seeks Reforms For Aging Inmates

Ralph Spinelli served stretches in Oregon and California as a younger man, his first following an armed robbery in 1969. “I’m done with crime,” he says. So done, in fact, that he’s become an academic and recently authored a memoir about …

http://www.oregonlive.com/politics/index.ssf/2014/10/oregon_ex-con_now_earning_a_ph.html

———

The Prisoners Fighting California’s Wildfires

As climate change makes the role of inmate firefighters in California increasingly crucial, Americans are beginning to ask whether the type of low-level offenders who qualify for the program even deserve to be locked up …

http://www.buzzfeed.com/amandachicagolewis/the-prisoners-fighting-californias-wildfires

———

Selkirk Man, 21, Takes Own Life In Prison Cell

 A 21-year-old man who was imprisoned for arson at age 17 hanged himself in his cell at Fishkill state prison. He was the 11th suicide this year among New York’s 54,000 state prisoners. He was also the youngest inmate to take his own life …

http://www.timesunion.com/local/article/21-year-old-state-prisoner-from-Selkirk-hangs-5870531.php

———

 

 

Categories: News

Contact

No appointment necessary!
Call us or stop by our main
office in Long Island City
headquarters during visiting
hours to learn more about
our programs and services.

Long Island City (Main Office)

29-76 Northern Boulevard
Long Island City, NY 11101

N/R/Q | Get Directions

(212) 691-7554
Mon-Thurs: 8am - 8pm
Fri: 8am - 5pm

Castle Gardens

625 W. 140th St.
New York, NY 10031

Get Directions

No walk-ins accepted at this location. Please call or visit our main office in Long Island City.

The Castle (Fortune Academy)

630 Riverside Drive
New York, NY 10031

Get Directions

No walk-ins accepted at this location. Please call or visit our main office in Long Island City.