You are receiving this newsletter because you are a member of the New York State Reentry Resource Center, a network of more than 2,000 advocates and direct service providers from all around the state. Each month, we bring you resource highlights, news, and policy updates from the online resource center.
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*Eight Reentry Bills Signed into Law*
Governor Paterson recently signed into law several bills pushed by reentry advocates as part of the 2010-2011 state budget. The new reentry laws include changes to Alcohol and Beverage Control Law to remove the ban on people with felony convictions working in most establishments with liquor licenses; provisions for individuals leaving jails or state prisons to receive free copies of their birth certificates and rap sheets; and entitlement of a copy of their original Pre-Sentence Reports for people going before the Parole Board. For the complete list and summary of changes, please see the Legal Action Center's release.
* Child Support Bill Becomes Law*
The Governor also signed a bill authorizing courts to modify child support orders when there's a reduction in income due to incarceration. Click here to read more.
*Governor Signs Law Limiting Stop-and-frisk*
New York Governor David Paterson signed a law prohibiting the New York Police Department from storing the names and addresses of New Yorkers stopped on the street and questioned, but found to have done nothing wrong. Press release
*Congress Passes Reforms to Reduce Disparity in Crack and Powder Cocaine Penalties *
The House approved a bill which would raise the minimum quantity of crack cocaine required to trigger a mandatory sentences narrowing the gap criminal penalties for crack and powder cocaine to 18 to 1 from the original 100 to 1. NY Times
Defender Toolkit- Using Knowledge of Collateral Consequences to Get Better Results in the Criminal Case: Updated Guide prepared by The Bronx Defenders provides defense counsel with an overview on how to use knowledge of collateral consequences to getbetter disposition in criminal cases.
DCJS 2009 Drug Law Reform Update: Presentation by Division of Criminal Justice Services on the changes associated with implementation of the new drug laws. This update from June 2010 includes latest trends in felony drug arrests, indictments and commitments to prison, judicial diversion, treatment participation, and the latest data available on felony drug plea and sentencing trends.
How to Safely Reduce Prison Populations and Support People Returning to their Communities: Brief by the Justice Policy Institute provides an overview of steps policy makers can take to reduce the prison population that result in stronger and safer communities. The brief focuses on various reforms to Parole to expand eligibility and improve supervision.
Do Adult Drug Courts Work? National Results from the Multi-Site Adult Drug Court Evaluation: The Urban Institute, the Center for Court Innovation, and RTI International conducted a five-year Multi-Site Adult Drug Court Evaluation on behalf of the National Institute of Justice. This presentation covers the impact of adult drug courts on: 1) drug use, 2) criminal activities and incarceration, 3) socioeconomic status, 4) mental health, and 5) families.
Compendium of Recidivism Studies: Database prepared by The Sentencing Project provides references for 99 recidivism studies conducted by various agencies between 1995-2009 in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The analyses addresses a broad variety of issues, including juvenile/adult status, gender, race, type of offense, type of program intervention among others.
Remember to visit Past Resources of the Week for highlighted reports, toolkits, and training materials from the past year.
Community Consultation to Discuss Drugs and Drug Policy: Join FREE! Families Rally for Emancipation and Empowerment, New York Academy of Medicine, The Drug Policy Alliance, and Syracuse University for a community consultation on New York's drug policy. Join other community members to inform how drug use and our current responses to it affect you, communities, families and individuals, and how our drug policies can be improved. Guided by the four pillars of comprehensive drug policy -- prevention, harm reduction, treatment, and public safety -- your input, opinions and ideas will help us develop a Blueprint for effective drug policy in New York. The event will be held on August 2 at 6 PM at the Schine Student Center, Room 304 Syracuse, NY. Please RSVP with Marion (FREE!) at (646) 667-9417.
Civil Liberties Discussion Series: Privacy and Stop-and-Frisk Policing: As part of the NYCLU's continuing Civil Liberties Discussion Series, NYCLU Legislative Director Robert Perry will discuss the civil rights and liberties implications of the new stop-and-frisk database law and what we have to do next to truly protect the right of all innocent New Yorkers to be left alone. Following the presentation, NYCLU staff will lead a discussion about how you can help in the fight to end racial profiling in New York City.The event will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 3 at 7 p.m at 125 Broad Street.
Mental Health Awareness Day: 1 in 6 adults and almost 1 in 10 children suffer from a diagnosable mental illness. Yet, for many, the stigma associated with the illness, can be as great a challenge as the disease itself. Join Rights for Imprisoned People with Psychiatric Disabilities for a Mental Health Awareness Day to bring light to the challenges that people with mental illness face. The event will be held on August 7 from 1 PM at Herbert Von King Park Ampitheater, Brooklyn, NY. For more information, please contact Lisa Ortega at firstname.lastname@example.org or 646-260-6575.
Remember to visit Reentry Net for full calendar listings and new job opportunities.