Replace the Death Penalty with Life: Support SAFE California

Join us for a March and Gathering entitled Replace the Death Penalty with Life:  Support SAFE California, to be held at the Religious Ed Congress at the Anaheim Convention Center on Saturday, March 24th.

Time:  11:30 a.m. immediately following Fr. Greg Boyle’s talk in the Convention Arena. 

The SAFE California Initiative seeks to replace the death penalty with a sentence of life imprisonment without possibility of parole.  The measure accords with the Church’s pro-life teaching on capital punishment and restorative justice, and eliminates the grave risk of executing an innocent person.  In the words of Bishop Gerald Wilkerson, the SAFE initiative is a “prudent, life-affirming, safety-enhancing, and cost-savings change in sentencing law.” Continue reading

Community Members Call for Restored Rights to People with Felony Convictions

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE—March 20th, 2012

Community Members Call for Restored Rights to People with Felony Convictions

Organizations Speak at Oakland City Council in Support of Resolutions to Support Prisoner Reentry

Press Contact:  Isaac Ontiveros, Californians United for a Responsible Budget | Ph. 510 444 0484

What: Oakland City Council Meeting

When: Tuesday, March 20 2012, 6:30pm

Where: Oakland City Hall, 1 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza Continue reading

Death in GEO Detention Camp

Fernando Dominguez Died In Administrative Limbo While In Immigration Detention

By Fernando Romero | March 16, 2012 | Huffington Post

On the morning of Friday, February 24, I got out of bed with my usual swagger. I made a pot a coffee, a light breakfast and started getting ready for work. Still with lazy eyes, I started answering some e-mails when my phone rang. The person on the other line identified himself as an agent with Immigration and Customs Enforcement so I piqued up immediately (because if that doesn’t wake you up, I don’t know what else does). Continue reading

Riot reveals Dangers of California’s relationship with CCA

A private-prison disaster in Oklahoma reveals the dangers of California’s reliance on Corrections Corporation of America

By Dave Maass | SD City Beat | March 14, 2012

At 11:37 a.m. on a Tuesday in October, a fight between two inmates started in the dining hall in a prison in western Oklahoma. Guards broke it up using pepper spray, and the situation returned to normal.

Or so they thought.

Minutes later, the dining hall erupted in all-out war with fists, kicks and food trays flying. Within 15 minutes, the entire facility was thrust into chaos as 600 inmates, mostly African-Americans and Hispanics associated with the Surenos prison gang, bloodied each other. Suddenly, one of the largest prison riots in California’s recent history was going down in a corrections facility a thousand miles outside the state. Continue reading

California to dish out $602 million for jail construction not education

California to dish out $602 million for jail construction

By  | KALW News | March 8, 2012 |  

The Corrections Standards Authority today approved $602,881,000 in funds for jail construction projects in 11 counties, the second phase in what’s now a $1.2 billion investment in county jails.

Los Angeles will receive $100 million, as will Riverside and Orange counties. Smaller grants will go to Santa Barbara, Tulare, Stanislaus, Kings, Shasta, Sutter, Madera, and Imperial counties.

Originally authorized in 2007 under AB 900, the allocations were recently kicked into gear to help counties deal with increased responsibility for low-level offenders under AB 109, the state’s prison realignment plan.

Continue reading

March 10 Welcome Home LA Resource Fair

March 10 Welcome Home  LA Resource Fair

Saturday March 10th from 3pm- 5pm

Join the Monthly Welcome Home Center Resource Fair for the Formerly Incarcerated and their Families

Resources include:

  • Assitance in obtaining government documents, travel support, jobs, housing, food and education
  • Drug and alcohol rehabilitation
  • Tattoo removal
  • Connection with Health Services, counseling, and life skills

Cali heading wrong direction- more counties plan jail expansion

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE—March 8, 2012

 California Counties Going Wrong Direction with Realignment

Updated Report Card Shows More Counties Plan Jail Expansion

Press Contact:  Isaac Ontiveros | Californians United for a Responsible Budget| 510 517 6612

California—As the Corrections Standards Authority announce grants for jail construction for Phase II of AB900, advocates across the state denounced the awards.

“Borrowing over $600 million to build jails we don’t need and can’t afford to operate is a huge step in the wrong direction,” said Debbie Reyes of the Fresno-based California Prison Moratorium Project, a member of Californians United for a Responsible Budget (CURB). “Gov. Brown’s realignment plan is an opportunity to stop putting people in cages who don’t need to be there. Instead of Sacramento funding jail expansion, we should be spending more money on community-based services.” Continue reading

Community Groups Reject LA County Bid For $100M Grant To Build New Jails

VIA CBS Community Groups Reject LA County Bid For $100M Grant To Build New Jails

LOS ANGELES (CBS) — A number of Southland activist groups are opposing efforts by county officials to obtain state funding for jail upgrades and new jail construction.

KNX 1070′s Pete Demetriou reports they want Los Angeles County supervisors to reject a potential $100 million grant.

Mary Sutton of Californians United for a Responsible Budget said plans for a new women’s prison in Castaic and other projects are anything but a responsible use of taxpayer dollars.

“If there is construction dollars, what they should be building is housing, job training centers, drug rehab centers,” said Sutton. Continue reading

OPPOSITION GROWS TO MASSIVE LA JAIL EXPANSION

OPPOSITION GROWS TO MASSIVE LA JAIL EXPANSION

by Peggy Clifford | Santa Monica Dispatch | March 5, 2012

Los Angeles–Young people, advocates, formerly incarcerated people and their families will gather outside the Los Angeles County Supervisor’s (BOS) meeting on Tuesday March 7 to challenge LA County’s proposed expansion of its jails and continue to voice their rejection of the County’s application for $100 million in state AB900 funds for the creation of a women’s jail in Castaic. On March 8, Corrections Standards Authority will announce which counties are qualified to receive AB900 Phase II Jail Construction dollars. Twenty counties in California have applied for a total of $1,102,855,803 including a $100 million application from LA County. Continue reading

California colleges take back seat to California prisons

Via SF Gate

California colleges take back seat to California prisons

San Francisco State University President Robert Corrigan, who is retiring this year, and Provost Sue Rosser noted today in Washington that California is spending nearly as much money on prisons ($8.7 billion, or 9.45 percent of its budget), as it does on all of higher education ($9.3 billion, or 10.1 percent of its budget).

Corrigan said the numbers are actually more stark. Total operational budgets for all 23 campuses of the state universities and for all nine UC campuses is $4.6 billion, less than half what the state spends on prisons. Continue reading

Balance needed on jail spending vs. rehabilitation

Via Sacramento Bee

Ever since lawmakers approved Gov. Jerry Brown’s plan for public safety “realignment,” local officials have engaged in a spirited debate about how much money should go to incarceration vs. rehabilitation.

In a letter to Sacramento County chief probation officer Don Meyer last week, Sacramento Assemblyman Roger Dickinson asked the county’s Community Corrections Partnership to revisit its decision to give the bulk of the state Public Safety Realignment funding to the sheriff. Continue reading

Organizations and Advocates Rally Against World’s Largest Jail System

For Immediate Release- March 5, 2012

Community Continues Opposition to Massive Expansion of LA County Jail

Organizations and Advocates Rally Against World’s Largest Jail System

Los Angeles–Young people, advocates, formerly incarcerated people and their families will gather outside the Los Angeles County Supervisor’s (BOS) meeting on Tuesday March 6th to challenge LA County’s proposed expansion of its jails and continue to voice their rejection of the County’s application for $100 million in state AB900 funds for the creation of a women’s jail in Castaic. On March 8, Corrections Standards Authority will announce which counties are qualified to receive AB900 Phase II Jail Construction dollars. Twenty counties in California have applied for a total of  $1,102,855,803 including a $100 million application from LA County. Continue reading

Take Action: California’s Youth Deserve a Second Chance!

Via ACLU California’s Youth Deserve a Second Chance!

In the United States each year, children as young as 13 are sentenced to spend the rest of their lives in prison without any opportunity for release.

In California, SB 9, the Fair Sentencing for Youth Act, would allow those individuals the opportunity to go before a judge to demonstrate their growth, maturity and rehabilitation and possibly keep them from dying in prison for crimes they committed as children.

Last year, this bill was a few votes shy of passing, and we know it will be close again this year. Urge your California Assembly member to vote Yes on SB 9. A critical vote may be taken as early as Monday, March 5, 2012.

Click here to Take Action!

Occupy the CA Capitol

Monday, March 5th: Occupy the Capitol!

Thousands of students, parents, teachers, and workers will flood into Sacramento on Monday, March 5th.  How long we stay will be up to you.

Join us to demand that Wall St. and the 1% pay to refund education, jobs, essential services, and a better future!

10 am – Mass March * Location TBA

11 am – Rally at the Capitol Building

12:30 pm – Lunch at the Capitol Building

3:30 pm – General Assembly and Nonviolent Direct Action Training to Occupy the Capitol! Continue reading