Texas Crime Survivors Celebrate New Laws Expanding Access To Victim Compensation And Reforming Probation To Improve Public Safety
June 16, 2021
Crime survivors in Texas applauded today as Governor Greg Abbott signed two landmark public safety bills, Senate Bill (SB) 957 and House Bill (HB) 385, promising to improve outcomes for crime survivors and increase community safety across the state.
Texas Legislature Passes Bill Expanding Access To Victim Compensation In Victory For Texas Crime Survivors
May 27, 2021
The Texas Legislature today passed critical reforms to the state’s victim compensation program, expanding access to the program in a victory for crime survivors and advocates. SB 957 – authored by Senator Judith Zaffirini and sponsored by Rep Krause – passed the Texas House of Representatives with bipartisan support and will reduce barriers to access so that more crime victims can receive assistance through the comprehensive program.
May 25, 2021
Crime survivors and criminal justice advocates today applauded the Texas Senate’s passage of HB 385 in a bipartisan vote. The bill, which already passed the Texas House of Representatives unanimously, would reform the state’s probation system, ensuring that Texans on probation are able to focus on rehabilitation to reduce recidivism, while creating safer communities and saving taxpayer money.
April 30, 2021
The Texas House of Representatives today passed groundbreaking reforms to the state’s probation system, which aims to improve public safety and reduce costs. House Bill 385 (Rep. Pacheco – San Antonio), which passed with bipartisan support, will ensure that those on probation focus on rehabilitation, rather than arbitrary conditions, to effectively reduce recidivism and end the cycle of crime in communities throughout the state.
U.S. Crime Survivors Release First-ever National Victims Agenda With Support From State Attorneys General
April 22, 2021
“For too long, the people most harmed by violence have also been the least helped,” said Aswad Thomas, gun violence survivor and national director of the 46,000-member Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice. “The National Crime Victims Agenda offers policymakers a clear plan to address the needs of all crime survivors and finally end the cycle of crime. Lawmakers should read this plan carefully, and finally listen to the survivors who’ve been historically left out of the public safety conversation.”
April 21, 2021
Today, a bipartisan group of lawmakers introduced a package of public safety reforms – the Safer Michigan Act – which increases recovery support for crime victims, and prioritizes rehabilitation programs to reduce recidivism and stop cycles of crime. The bills – with widespread support from crime victims – would enact policies that have proven successful in other states.
April 21, 2021
We honor George Floyd and hold his family and loved ones in our hearts. Today’s verdict provides an important measure of accountability for his murder, yet we know it cannot erase the loss, pain and trauma.
Florida Crime Survivors Urge State Lawmakers to Pass Reforms that Prioritize Victims’ Needs and Make Communities Safer
April 7, 2021
More than 200 Florida crime victims have come together to urge the state legislature and Governor Ron DeSantis to prioritize the needs of crime victims. In a letter to state lawmakers, victims urged the need to pass a slate of reforms that would stop the cycle of violence impacting communities across the state.
April 1, 2021
Crime Survivors Applaud Ohio Senate for Passing SB 36, Expanding Access to Crime Victim Compensation Program
March 3, 2021
The Ohio Senate today passed critical reforms to the state’s crime victim compensation program, reducing excessive barriers to recovery services that promote healing and recovery from crimes. The Alliance for Safety and Justice (ASJ) and its Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice network in Ohio, which have advocated for the legislation for more than two years, applaud Senate leaders for the bill’s passage.
Alliance for Safety and Justice Announces New, Expanded Leadership Team to Lead National Safety Reform Efforts
March 2, 2021
Alliance for Safety and Justice (ASJ), a national organization focused on winning new safety priorities in the largest states across the country, today announced a new, expanded leadership team.
Criminal Justice Advocates Applaud Biden-Harris Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Reforms for Expanding Access to People with Past Convictions
February 23, 2021
Alliance for Safety and Justice applauded the Biden-Harris Administration’s announcement today to change the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), including the elimination of exclusions of small business owners with old legal convictions from accessing support through the program.
Governor Pritzker Signs Groundbreaking Public Safety Reforms with Widespread Support from Crime Victims into Law
February 22, 2021
Governor J.B Pritzker today signed a comprehensive public safety reform package – spearheaded by the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus – that prioritize rehabilitation and supports communities most impacted by crime but least served by the current criminal justice system. The legislation’s reforms include improvements to the state’s sentence credit program to reduce recidivism and over-incarceration, as well as a lowering of barriers for crime survivors to access victim services – changes championed by the Alliance for Safety and Justice, with widespread support among crime survivors throughout Illinois.
Alliance for Safety and Justice Co-Founder Robert Rooks to become President Emeritus of ASJ Board of Directors
February 9, 2021
The Alliance for Safety and Justice (ASJ) today announced that co-founder Robert Rooks will transition on March 1 from his role as Chief Executive Officer to become President Emeritus of the organization’s Board of Directors. Rooks will remain active with ASJ, as he assumes a new role as Chief Executive Officer of REFORM Alliance, an allied criminal justice reform organization founded in 2019.
November 19, 2020
Newtown Police Chief Tom Synan and Miamisburg Ret. Asst. Police Chief Thomas N. Thompson expressed their support for Senate Bill 3, submitting testimony to the Ohio House Criminal Justice Committee that is considering the bill. Senate Bill 3 would make low-level drug possession a misdemeanor instead of a felony.
Victory for Crime Survivors as Senate Bill 369 Passes with Backing of Ohio Leaders & Public Safety Groups
November 19, 2020
The Alliance for Safety and Justice (ASJ) applauds the Ohio Senate for passing Senate Bill 369, removing barriers to victims compensation and recovery support faced by crime victims. The legislation, which ASJ has advocated for over the past two years, is a landmark win for crime survivors and public safety across the state. Senate Bill 369 amends eligibility requirements for crime victims to better access support from the state’s victim compensation program.
Governor Whitmer Signs Clean Slate Legislation to Automate Clearance of Old Records Passed with Support of Crime Victims and Advocates
October 13, 2020
Today, Governor Whitmer signed the bipartisan Clean Slate legislation to reduce the bureaucracy related to clearing old legal records that can block Michigan residents from opportunity. The legislation, supported by the Alliance for Safety and Justice, Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice, and many in the business community will automate the expungement of certain criminal records after several years.
Clean Slate Legislation to Automate Clearance of Old Records Passes Michigan Senate with Support of Crime Victims and Criminal Justice Reform Advocates
September 23, 2020
Today, the Senate passed bipartisan Clean Slate legislation to reduce the bureaucracy related to clearing old legal records that can block Michigan residents from opportunity.
September 9, 2020
Most crime victims and Americans with mental health issues don’t receive support or treatment, according to a new nationwide survey released today, called “America’s Safety Gaps Survey.” Less than one-third of crime victims receive help following their victimization and less than half of Americans with a mental health or substance abuse issue receive treatment, a gap that undermines the ability to stop cycles of crime and the resulting harm.
Austin Crime Survivors Urge City Council to Prioritize Needs of Crime Victims in Upcoming City Budget
August 6, 2020
As the Austin City Council considers how it can address racism as a public health crisis, local crime survivors made an emotional plea Thursday for public safety funds to be redirected to establish Texas’ first trauma recovery center. The center would serve victims of violence, especially those from communities most harmed by crime and violence, who are disproportionately underserved.
June 30, 2020
The Alliance for Safety and Justice (ASJ) applauded the Ohio Senate Judiciary Committee for passing Senate Bill 3 today. The bipartisan legislation, which ASJ has advocated for over the past year-and-a-half, is now headed to the Ohio Senate floor for a vote.
Illinois Forges New Approach to Public Safety Spending with Innovative Use of $20 Million in COVID-19 DOJ Stimulus Funds
June 26, 2020
As Criminal Justice Budgets Get New Scrutiny, New Report Shows How $850 Million for States, Typically for Law Enforcement, Can Fund Community-Based Public Safety Alternatives & Reentry - Exactly What Illinois Has Pioneered
REPORT: $850 Million in U.S. Justice Department COVID Funds Can Go to Violence Prevention, Crime Victim & Reentry Programs to Secure Health & Safety of Communities
June 26, 2020
Strained during Pandemic, Safety Solutions outside of Justice System Can Be Boosted with Millions in New Emergency Stimulus Funding
Clean Slate legislation passes Senate Judiciary and Public Safety Committee with Support of Crime Victims and Criminal Justice Reform Advocates
June 24, 2020
Today, the Senate Judiciary and Public Safety Committee passed Clean Slate legislation. The legislation, supported by the Alliance for Safety and Justice,Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice and many in the business community will help remove post-conviction barriers for Michigan residents.
As Senate Bill 3 Approaches Vote, Nonpartisan Agency’s Fiscal Impact Statement Estimates $75 Million Cost Savings & 2,700 Fewer People Sentenced to Prison
May 21, 2020
The Alliance for Safety and Justice highlighted a fiscal impact statement from the Ohio Legislative Service Commission, indicating Senate Bill 3 would have positive results for taxpayers and the state’s severely overcrowded prison system. The nonpartisan agency’s analysis estimated that the legislation will produce up to $75 million in cost savings and 2,700 fewer people sentenced to prison each year for a low-level drug possession offense.
Alliance for Safety and Justice Calls for Immediate Passage of Senate Bill 3 Reduce Prison Overcrowding, Help People With Addiction Get Treatment
May 20, 2020
The Alliance for Safety and Justice called on the Ohio General Assembly to immediately pass Senate Bill 3 to make low-level drug possession a misdemeanor instead of a felony, reduce prison overcrowding and help people with addiction get treatment.
May 2, 2020
The Alliance for Safety and Justice released an estimate indicating that close to half of those incarcerated in the U.S. – nearly one million people – have a current chronic illness that could put them at increased risk to COVID-19. Research by the U.S. Department of Justice and The Pew Charitable Trusts suggest that approximately 40% of the 2.2 million people in jails and prisons have a chronic medical condition.
Jails and Prisons Have Become the Biggest Coronavirus Hotspots in the Country: 8 of the Top 10 Largest COVID-19 Outbreaks in U.S.
April 27, 2020
The Alliance for Safety and Justice released a fact sheet highlighting new data revealing the dramatic spread of COVID-19 throughout jails and prisons across the country, as well as solutions to stem its proliferation. According to recent data compiled by The New York Times, eight of the nation’s top 10 largest Coronavirus outbreaks are jails or prisons, with two Ohio prisons taking the top two spots.
Closing out National Crime Victims' Rights Week, Music Artists & Elected Officials Join Thousands of Crime Victims from across Country to Call for Renewed Attention to Crime Survivors during #SurvivorsSpeak Virtual Conference
April 27, 2020
During the conference, members of Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice, a national network of over 42,000 crime survivors will urge support for the #StopTheSpread Action Plan that aligns with their priorities of prevention, rehabilitation, trauma recovery over more spending on over-incarceration.
Alliance for Safety and Justice Urges Judges and Prosecutors to Help Gov. DeWine Prevent COVID-19 Spread, Address Nation’s Biggest Outbreak in Ohio
April 21, 2020
The Alliance for Safety and Justice urged judges and prosecutors in Ohio to help Gov. Mike DeWine prevent the spread of COVID-19 by taking action within their authority to reduce incarceration in state prisons. Sentencing judges in Ohio have the authority to initiate judicial release proceedings that can result in the release of people being held in state prisons who pose no substantial public safety risk. Ohio recently became the home of the country’s largest Coronavirus outbreak, with nearly 2,000 cases at the Marion Correctional Institution, a state prison in Marion.
April 10, 2020
Alliance for Safety and Justice Recognizes Action by Governor DeWine on Release of Limited Number of People from State Prison, Encourages Continued Progress to Safely Reduce Incarceration and Prevent COVID-19 Spread
April 3, 2020
In response to Gov. Mike DeWine’s announcement that the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction will recommend the release of a limited number of pregnant women and elderly people from state prison facilities, the Alliance for Safety and Justice released the following statement from its Ohio State Director, Shakyra Diaz.
Key Texas Legislators Host Virtual Town Hall with Crime Survivors and Advocates to Discuss Protecting Some of Texas’ Most Vulnerable Citizens During COVID-19
March 31, 2020
Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice and advocates discuss challenges faced by providers of emergency housing and other critical services, release survey to identify needs of vulnerable communities
Alliance for Safety and Justice and Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice Call for Governor DeSantis to Prevent COVID-19 Spread by Supporting Vulnerable Communities
March 30, 2020
The largest criminal justice reform group in the country, Alliance for Safety and Justice (ASJ), and Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice (CSSJ), a national network of over 42,000 crime survivors, called for Florida to take action in support of vulnerable communities to stop the spread of Coronavirus throughout the state. In letters sent to Governor Ron DeSantis on Friday, the groups urged him to deepen support for critical services that vulnerable Floridians rely on to be healthy and safe, while safely reducing unnecessary incarceration as a path to preventing the spread of COVID-19.
Criminal Justice Reform Leaders & Crime Survivor Network Praise Gov. Pritzker For His Response to COVID-19, Recommend Further Steps to Protect Vulnerable Populations in Illinois
March 30, 2020
Leaders with Alliance for Safety and Justice (ASJ) and Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice praised Governor J.B. Pritzker for his leadership in Illinois’ COVID-19 response, while highlighting additional steps that can help protect vulnerable populations to stop the spread of the Coronavirus. The groups especially noted the attention Governor Pritzker has paid to supporting essential health and social services as well as incarcerated individuals.
Criminal Justice Reform Leaders & Crime Survivor Network Praise Michigan Gov. Whitmer For Executive Order Protecting Vulnerable Communities from COVID-19 with Smart Justice System Policies
March 30, 2020
Leaders with Alliance for Safety and Justice (ASJ) and Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice applaud Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s executive order to protect those working at Michigan’s correctional facilities along with at risk populations in prisons, jails and detention centers across the state during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Alliance for Safety and Justice Releases Video Highlighting Broad Support for Senate Bill 3’s Reforms to Better Address Addiction
February 5, 2020
The Alliance for Safety and Justice (ASJ) released a new video of key Ohio stakeholders from the state legislature, law enforcement, and advocacy and policy organizations urging support for the reforms in Senate Bill 3.
Leading into Democratic Presidential Debate, Advocates Point to CA as Model of Criminal Justice Reforms That Candidates Have Proposed
December 19, 2019
Ahead of tonight’s Democratic Presidential debate in Los Angeles, advocates pointed to the State of California as a prime example of a state that has successfully implemented criminal justice reforms to reduce incarceration and improve public safety.
Alliance for Safety and Justice & Partners to Launch Ad Campaign in Support of Ohio Bill to Address Addiction during Ohio State-Michigan and Browns-Steelers Games
December 2, 2019
The campaign will begin with a 60-second commercial during the Ohio State-Michigan and Cleveland Browns-Pittsburgh Steelers football games, detailing the story of a Seville, Ohio father who lost his son to an overdose after receiving a felony conviction for low-level, simple drug possession.
Pew Study Shows Drug Problems Not Solved by Imprisonment, Ohio Data Shows Overdoses Not Reduced by Felony Convictions & Incarceration
November 1, 2019
Citing a Pew Charitable Trust issue brief - More Imprisonment Does Not Reduce State Drug Problems - released last year that found more imprisonment does not reduce state drug problems, the Alliance for Safety and Justice expressed support for state lawmakers to pass Senate Bill 3 to better address Ohio’s addiction epidemic and improve the health and safety of communities across the state.
As House Transmits Bill to Governor’s Office, Over 400 Florida Crime Survivors Send Letter to Governor DeSantis & Legislature, Urging Historic Criminal Justice Reform Bill Be Signed
June 27, 2019
Today, after the Florida Legislature officially transmitted HB 7125 for consideration by the Governor’s office, Florida crime victims from Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice sent a letter to Governor Ron DeSantis and the Florida State Legislature, urging the historic criminal justice reform bill be signed into law.
Illinois State Leaders and Justice Reform Advocates Celebrate Signing of Most Equity & Justice-Oriented Marijuana Legalization Passed by a State Legislature, Providing Relief to Hundreds of Thousands of Illinois Residents
June 25, 2019
Bill is first of any state legislature in nation to establish recreational sale and includecomprehensive expungement provisions and funding for communities hardest hit by drug war.
Ohio Crime Survivors, Advocates Celebrate State’s National Leadership in Addressing Trauma as Safety Issue through DeWine-Led Creation & Expansion of Trauma Recovery Centers
June 10, 2019
Advocates and crime victims worked with Gov. DeWine to ensure Ohio has second-highest number of centers of any state in nation to meet recovery needs of crime victims.
May 24, 2019
Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed new legislation to overhaul the state’s medical parole process. The laws, HB 4129-4132, were passed overwhelmingly by the Michigan House and Senate and allow the state to parole seriously ill and “medically frail” prisoners. It would permit them to obtain care at medical facilities and nursing homes instead of prisons, saving the state millions in taxpayer dollars.
Alliance for Safety and Justice Applauds Texas House of Representatives for Supporting Reforms to Probation System
May 3, 2019
The Texas House of Representatives today passed criminal justice reform legislation that will prioritize rehabilitation over incarceration, a position supported and applauded by the Alliance For Safety and Justice (ASJ) and crime survivors across Texas.
May 3, 2019
Criminal justice reforms, which both reduce incarceration and improve safety, were advanced in partnership with crime victims.
April 29, 2019
“Florida is in the midst of passing one of the most significant pieces of justice reform in the state’s past 20 years, the result of House leadership’s historic partnership with crime victims to advance a safety and justice agenda,” said Robert Rooks, Vice President of Alliance for Safety and Justice.
April 16, 2019
HB 7125, which establishes new safety priorities for Florida, passes the House’s Appropriations Committee.
April 11, 2019
Findings released as nation observes Crime Victims’ Rights Week April 7-13, 2019
Alliance for Safety and Justice & Crime Survivors Applaud Rep. Renner for Smart Justice Reforms to Improve Safety
April 9, 2019
JDC 19-02, which establishes new safety priorities for Florida, passes the House’s Judiciary Committee unanimously
New Report Reveals Why Ohio Prison System Has Not Met Projected Reductions & Costs Continue to Rise, with Expected $2 Billion DRC Budget in Next Budget Cycle
March 27, 2019
report issued today by the Alliance for Safety and Justice, The Buckeye Institute, and Americans for Prosperity highlights the Ohio Legislature’s important steps on criminal justice reform in the past and reveals why projected prison population decreases have still lagged in the state.
Alliance for Safety and Justice Applauds State Senators for Continuing to Prioritize Drug Sentencing and Justice Reform in SB3
March 6, 2019
The Alliance for Safety and Justice issued the following statement in response to the Ohio Senate’s press conference and hearing on Senate Bill 3, a drug sentencing and justice reform proposal.
January 12, 2019
On Tuesday, January 8, more than 1.4 million Floridians with a past felony conviction regained the eligibility to vote, the result of voters approving Amendment 4 to the Florida constitution this past November.
January 10, 2019
Monday afternoon, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner signed SB 1607, the Criminal Justice Best Practices Act, into law. This measure, sponsored by Rep. Jehan Gordon-Booth (D-Peoria) and Sen. Kwame Raoul (D-Chicago), introduces best practices to facilitate re-entry for individuals leaving incarceration and reduce recidivism and follows on the heels of the passage of the Neighborhood Safety Act in 2017.
September 13, 2018
Legislation that allows the Michigan Parole Board to grant parole based on objective factors was signed into law by Governor Rick Snyder.
September 6, 2018
The Alliance for Safety and Justice (ASJ), in partnership with the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, launched a new television ad running statewide in Florida.
August 20, 2018
The bipartisan legislation known as SB66 was signed into law by Governor Kasich this summer and represents a balanced approach to public safety.
First-Ever Survey of Michigan Crime Survivors Finds Majority Want More Funding on Prevention and Less Focus on Punishment
July 11, 2018
Despite popular assumptions that victims support long prison sentences, the vast majority of crime survivors in Michigan believe the criminal justice system invests too little in rehabilitation and treatment and focuses too much on punishment.
June 27, 2018
The Alliance for Safety and Justice (ASJ), one of the nation’s leading criminal justice reform organizations praised the passing of SB 66 in the Ohio House of Representatives. Passing SB 66 was one of ASJ’s top priorities for the year. The bill must now go back to the Senate for final passage.
Diverse Survivors of Crime Step Forward as New Political Constituency on Criminal Justice and Public Safety Policy
November 14, 2017
Today, Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice, a flagship project of the Alliance for Safety and Justice, announced a national expansion of their organizing effort to bring together diverse survivors of crime and amplify survivors’ voices in criminal justice and public safety policy.
October 27, 2017
Today, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services announced a $365,927 grant to Hurley Medical Center in Flint, Mich. to establish a trauma recovery center, becoming the third state in the nation to create a network of trauma recovery centers to support victims of violent crime.
Diverse Leaders React to Ohio Governor Kasich’s Signing of State Budget, Including Criminal Justice Reforms
July 1, 2017
Today, Ohio Governor John Kasich signed the 2018-2019 state budget, which includes provisions to reduce the number of people in state prison in the top incarcerating counties and to reduce incarcerations due to technical probation violations, while also investing dollars in local programming and incentivizing rehabilitation by expanding access to earned credit.
June 22, 2017
Key findings from a recent public opinion survey of representative Ohio voters were released today showing voters’ strong support for criminal justice reforms that reduce the number of people in state prison for low-level offenses.
March 10, 2017
Today, Governor Bruce Rauner signed Senate Bill 2872, the Neighborhood Safety Act, into law. This groundbreaking law will help stop the cycle of crime by expanding access to trauma recovery services for crime victims, incentivizing inmates to participate in rehabilitation programs including life skills, job training and substance abuse treatment, and expanding judicial discretion for some sentencing decisions.
January 31, 2017
Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced today that he is awarding more than $2.6 million in grants to create five Trauma Recovery Centers in Ohio that will provide crisis intervention to hospitalized traumatic violent crime victims.
January 10, 2017
The nation has been watching the state of Illinois struggle with an increase in prison expenditures, an increase in violence in Chicago, and an increase in the number of victims needing treatment and trauma recovery.
August 5, 2016
A new, first-of-its-kind national survey released by the Alliance for Safety and Justice (ASJ) bucks conventional wisdom regarding the views of crime victims on incarceration. Despite popular assumptions that victims support long sentences and prison expansion, the National Survey of Victims’ Views finds that victims would prefer the criminal justice system focus more on...