WASHINGTON, DC – FWD.us Senior Director of Criminal Justice Reform Zoë Towns issued the following statement today on the passage of Reentry & Employability Reforms (HB 387) in Mississippi:
“We applaud Mississippi Senate President Tate Reeves (R), House Speaker Philip Gunn (R), Representative Andy Gipson (R), Representative Joel Bomgar (R), and Senator Jenifer Branning (R) for their leadership in passing House Bill 387, a bipartisan solution that makes urgently needed reforms to the state’s broken criminal justice system.
“While Mississippi has made strides in recent years in safely reducing crime and incarceration, significant challenges remain, including for those reentering the community from prison or jail. House Bill 387 will ease this transition and reduce recidivism by prohibiting the use of jail for nonpayment of fees and fines, allowing supervision officers to use video call technology to conduct check-ins with minimal disruption to employment, and expanding parole eligibility for those convicted of nonviolent crimes. Additionally, the bill will lay the groundwork for further critical reform, by creating the Mississippi Sentencing Disparity Task Force.
“With the passage of HB 387, Mississippi has doubled-down on its commitment to criminal justice reforms that build safer communities and foster stronger families. We look forward to the Governor’s signature, and celebrating this victory for and with all Mississippians.”