ALBANY, NY — FWD.us New York State Director for Criminal Justice Reform Rena Karefa-Johnson issued the following statement on rollbacks to New York’s historic bail reform:
“More jail has never been the answer. This pandemic is a vivid reminder that the costs of pretrial jailing are paid not just with crippling financial ruin, trauma, and family separation, but with lives. Albany is voting on a budget with bail reform rollbacks that will be characterized opportunistically by some as ‘minor tweaks.’ In fact, they claw freedom back from thousands of New Yorkers annually, many of whom will be sent to jail on misdemeanor charges. If we needed proof these changes were always about politics and not about the public’s safety, it can be found in the sweetener elected officials left for private corrections companies to profit off of pretrial electronic monitoring services.
“In moments of crisis, we need our elected leaders to step up, exhibit moral clarity, and protect all New Yorkers. Instead, they are poised to take a giant step back on liberty and justice, and New Yorker’s lives are in the balance.”