Committee Reports

Mass Incarceration: Seizing the Moment for Reform


In September 2015, the New York City Bar Association released a report on Mass Incarceration and announced the formation of a Task Force to examine ways to reduce mass incarceration in the United States.  The report  urges federal and state leaders “to make the reduction of mass incarceration a top priority” and calls on Congress and state legislatures to repeal or reduce mandatory minimum sentencing provisions; reduce the sentences recommended by sentencing guidelines and similar laws for non-violent offenses; expand the sentencing alternatives to prison including drug programs, mental health programs and job training programs; and, in cases of incarceration, expand the availability of rehabilitative services, including counseling and educational opportunities, during and following incarceration so that individuals can successfully reenter society and avoid recidivism; eliminate or reduce financial conditions of pretrial release; provide opportunities for individuals with misdemeanor and non-violent felony convictions to seal those records to prevent employment and other discrimination; and, in New York, enact legislation to raise the age of juvenile jurisdiction from 16 to 18 years old.