Corrections & Sentencing Division

 Co-Executive Directors

Raul Ayala, Stephen Zeidman

ADR/Restorative Justice Committee

Co-Chairs: Arthur Burnett, Robert Haferd

This Committee examines mediation and other dispute resolution techniques as alternatives to the criminal justice system. The Committee also studies processes that repair the harm caused or revealed by criminal behavior that include all stakeholders in a process of transforming the traditional relationship between communities and their governments in responding to crime.

Goals:

Develop ideas and promote projects on how to spread the Florida citation approach, especially in dealing with minor offenses occurring in school discipline cases to avoid stigmatizing the youth and give them negative attitude towards gong to school and giving them an arrest record and thus reduce collateral consequences for future of child.   

Publish content and articles, and hold CLEs, on restorative justice diversion approaches both for juveniles and develop diversion programs for adult minor offenders as a means to promote progressive prosecution and prosecutorial culture change in limiting criminal charges prosecuted.

Approach the National Criminal Law Defense Bar and Public  Defender Organizations on  applying diversion programs to adult offenders for minor offenders, or those suffering forgetfulness or acting under duress or threats unwillingly.

Approach National Prosecution Organizations on the issue of Prosecutors charging everyone in site of the crime with  co-participation  to coerce testimony to save their themselves from being criminally charged with more serious offenses and to coerce their testimony which may be false  or exaggerated against the primary offenders and the consequences of the heavy burden on the judiciary in dealing with habeas corpus litigation from the convicted main wrongdoers.

Alternatives to Incarceration and Diversion Committee

Co-Chairs Raul Ayala, Stephen Zeidman

Focuses on analyzing and promoting workable alternatives to incarceration for offenders who may benefit from treatment and other forms of community sanctions. The committee also studies treatment and diversion options for offenders who suffer from treatable conditions, such as substance abuse and mental illness to avoid burdening them with the stigma of a conviction and incarceration and to avoid resultant great expense to the community. The committee will look at ways these programs can be used to improve the efficacy of the criminal justice system.

Issues of Interest:

1.     Criminal Justice Reform, particularly as they may relate to alternatives to incarceration and increased diversion programs (state and federal).

2.     Continued contribution to the Diversion Standards Task Force.

3.     Input and commentary on legislation affecting alternatives to incarceration, diversion and related treatment programs.

Corrections Committee

Co-Chairs: William Ball,  Keramet Reiter·        

Studies issues that affect correctional institutions and inmates. Examines matters related to sentencing, such as sentencing alternatives and mandatory sentencing issues. Prepares testimony before the U.S. Sentencing Commission on such issues as offense and offender characteristics, judicial discretion with the guidelines, availability of probation, and sentence severity.

Issues of Interest:

Private prisons—regulation, contracting with, state bans on. The role of government contracts in public prisons (e.g. federal government “renting” space)

The extension of virtual forms of incarceration (e.g. electronic monitoring)

Fines and fees—particularly the use of jail for non-payment of those fees.

Goals for 2020-2021:

·         Continue to have quarterly committee check-in meetings

·         Support Lynn Branham in re-introducing people first language

·         Support SpearIt in drafting legislation to protect prisoners involved in litigation from having that litigation mooted through transfer

·         Support Jack Donson with exploring the possibility of advocacy around establishing or supporting an ombudsperson

·         Support David Ball in work around pre-trial education and advocacy

·         Explore a COVID-related CLS

Law Enforcement Committee

Chair: Anthony Holloway

This committee of law enforcement professionals and other interested CJS members examines historical, current, and developing trends in police practices at all stages of criminal investigations and prosecutions. The committee may develop and propose new ABA policy as well as collaborate in educational efforts with other national law enforcement organizations and ABA entities. It also serves as a source of subject matter expertise in the field of law enforcement policy and best practices for the CJS and the ABA as a whole.

Goals for 2020-2021:

  • Participate on a podcast addressing trending reform action items like demilitarizing the police, no knock warrants.
  • Focus on Law Enforcement reform and Criminal Justice and seek opportunities for collaboration
  • Serve as a resource to CJS Committees as they explore law enforcement reform

Parole/Probation Committee

Co-Chairs: TBD

Works with the professionals who are responsible for completing pre-sentence reports for Courts to ensure that fair and appropriate information is provided so that the Courts can make informed and just decisions; works towards maximizing relationships and strategies with those who supervise more than five million individuals on probation or parole; advances public safety issues regarding those on pretrial and post-sentencing community supervision.

Goals:

  • Explore alternatives to traditional probation and parole practices as they relate to the incarceration of individuals for noncompliance and assess how current practices regarding terms, conditions, and fees, impact low-income offenders.
  • Document nationwide best practices regarding the alternative disposition of marijuana cases and how these practices impact criminal justice resources, reoffending, and the safety of communities.
  • Explore the multi-jurisdictional use of personal recognizance bonds and release conditions as a form of “pretrial probation” and asses the related effects on offenders, the community, and criminal justice practitioners.
  • Explore the relationship and applicability of restorative justice principals to probation and parole.

Pretrial Justice Committee

Co-Chairs: Christina Klineman, Alec Karakatsanis

The committee promotes evidence based practices to improve pre-trial justice and police practices. The Committee works to develop projects and policies that decrease or prevent crime and its underlying causes such as drug and alcohol abuse and criminal violent behavior especially involving guns. The committee supports evidence-based government and community programs to reduce the risk factors related to criminal participation and victimization. The committee addresses topics such as safety training for citizens and removing dangerous career criminals from society. In cooperation with other Section Committees the committee supports diversion, reentry and other efforts that have proven to reduce recidivism.

Goals for 2020-2021:

The committee will consider the following topics for discussion and programming:

1.    Expansion of pretrial detention and/or supervision in the name of “reform”

2.    Proliferation of risk assessment tools in determining bond and release conditions

3.    Interplay between pretrial justice and policing in the broader context of systemic reform.

Re-entry/Collateral Consequences Committee

Co-Chairs: Eddie Ellis, Chiquisha Robinson

Focuses on the barriers that offenders face in re-entering society after receiving a criminal conviction. Reviews obstacles that offenders face in the area of employment, housing, educational opportunities, and other areas, which impact their ability to become a law-abiding citizen. Examine ways to assist in neutralizing the effects of criminal convictions on persons trying to rebuild their lives.

Focuses on the barriers that offenders face in re-entering society after receiving a criminal conviction. Reviews obstacles that offenders face in the area of employment, housing, educational opportunities, and other areas, which impact their ability to become a law-abiding citizen. Examine ways to assist in neutralizing the effects of criminal convictions on persons trying to rebuild their lives.

Focuses on the barriers that offenders face in re-entering society after receiving a criminal conviction. Reviews obstacles that offenders face in the area of employment, housing, educational opportunities, and other areas, which impact their ability to become a law-abiding citizen. Examine ways to assist in neutralizing the effects of criminal convictions on persons trying to rebuild their lives.

Sentencing Committee

Co-Chairs:  Federal:   Rebecca Brodey, Tess Lopez

State:  Shima Baradaran, Carlos Garcia

Examines matters related to sentencing, such as sentencing alternatives, mandatory sentencing, etc. Prepares testimony before the U.S. Sentencing Commission on such issues as offense and offender characteristics, judicial discretion with the federal sentencing guidelines, availability of probation, and sentence severity.