Criminal Justice Reform

America’s criminal justice system is fundamentally broken — we lock too many people up for far too long, and we prevent too many people from achieving their full potential. Our current criminal justice system fails to make us safer or create more opportunity. It causes substantial harm to communities and families, especially to communities of color, while incurring significant cost to taxpayers at the local, state, and federal level. It undermines the promise of who we can and should be. is focused on achieving commonsense, bipartisan solutions that:

Safely reduce the number of people incarcerated

Shrink the criminal justice system

Create opportunities for the tens of millions of individuals who have been incarcerated or who have criminal records

We’re committed to driving change grounded in the people and families who are directly impacted by the system, and in the data about what works.

The majority of criminal justice policy is determined at the state and local level. That’s why we have decided to focus our efforts in individual states where we can support state leaders in making an impact today.


New York currently claims the sixth largest incarcerated population in the United States, with more than 75,000 people behind bars. Another 145,000 people in the state are on probation or parole, and hundreds of thousands more have a criminal record that makes it more difficult to go to school, get a job, and find a place to live.


OUR 2018 WORK:

FWD joins a broad coalition of individuals and organizations supporting pretrial reform in New York’s 2018 legislative session. We will measure success based on the impact reforms will have on safely reducing jail populations across the state and protecting the legal rights of people who have been accused of crimes. Learn more.


Oklahoma has the  highest incarceration rate in the country, and has imprisoned women at a higher rate than any other state for nearly 30 years. The vast majority of women in Oklahoma prisons are mothers – and on any given day, 26,000 children in Oklahoma have a parent in prison. The current system is costing taxpayers billions, hurting families and keeping moms and kids apart, and isn’t making Oklahoma communities safer.


OUR 2018 WORK:

We are proud to work alongside the bipartisan Oklahomans for Criminal Justice Reform to advance a package of comprehensive sentencing and corrections reforms developed by a state task force comprised of law enforcement, state agency leaders, judges, legislators, business leaders, and treatment and victim advocates.