Monthly Archives: October 2015

Nov. 2 Criminal Justice meet & greet 2-4 pm Great Hall, Statehouse

CRIMINAL JUSTICE EXPO For the first time ever, please join the:

Massachusetts Black and Latino Legislative Caucus

Harm Reduction and Drug Law Reform Caucus

House Progressive Caucus

Senate Progressive Caucus

With Support By:

Massachusetts Caucus of Women Legislators

In a united call to action for critical criminal justice reforms.

 Monday, November 2, 2015

2PM – 4PM

Great Hall, State House

 

Join legislators, staff and advocacy groups to learn about criminal justice bills, ask questions and network. The time is now!

#MAJusticeNow

Brief speaking program at 2:30PM

Maura Healy says one thing … and does another. Hold her accountable.

Please take a minute to email Attorney General Maura Healey to urge her to honor her campaign promise to support the repeal of mandatory minimum sentences forall drug offenses.
During her campaign, Healy stated support of ending mandatory minimums for drug offenses. Now, in a key letter to the Judiciary Committee, Healy backed off.
As Barbara Dougan of FAMM, Families Against Mandatory Minimums, explained:

“This is significant because low level trafficking offenses outnumber all other drug offenses that require mandatory prison sentences.  Plus, “trafficking” is such a loaded word. It’s usually associated with kingpins and violence, even though statistics show that our trafficking laws sweep up many low level nonviolent drug offenders.

“That’s not surprising, seeing as Massachusetts defines “trafficking” as the sale of as little as 2 to 3 tablespoons of hard drugs. Worse, requiring prison sentences for addicts who commit low level drug crimes, rather than sending them to no nonsense treatment programs, prevents us from effectively addressing the opioid crisis.”

You can send an prepared email through the FAMM website here:  http://advocate.famm.org/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=16182
or  email Healy directly:  ago@state.ma.us
Email campaigns are most effective when the official receives many emails on a topic with DIFFERENT subject lines and messages.
Below is a variant of the email I sent as another possible model.
THANK YOU for taking this small action today.

Dear Attorney General Healey,

I am an activist to reform our state’s judicial and corrections systems through a series of bills passed over a number of years.

Given your campaign promises, I was disappointed to learn in your letter to the Judiciary Committee that you no longer support the repeal of mandatory minimums forall drug offenses.

I agree that major drug kingpins should be incarcerated. Unfortunately, the threshold for “trafficking” in Massachusetts is so low that many people convicted under trafficking laws are often addicts who sell to support their addiction. Such people  fill our prisons. Many leave their families stranded, dependent on public assistance.

Please uphold your campaign platform that we need to treat addiction like a health problem not a crime. End mandatory minimum sentencing to give judges the authority to determine punishment — or medical treatment.

I urge you to uphold your campaign pledge and lend support to end mandatory minimums for all drug offenses.  It will save lives and save the Commonwealth money in the long haul.

Sincerely,

Oct. 14 Hearing at the Statehouse – 1 pm on justice reform

Calling all activists to the Statehouse for a Judiciary Committee hearing on Wednesday, Oct. 13, Statehouse on Beacon Hill hearing room 2-A at 1 pm. Formal testimony on pending legislation on reforming our justice and corrections system will be presented. Jobs Not Jails is coordinating a bus from Worcester. Your presence shows people care about reform.

The Massachusetts State Legislature will only pass new laws when they feel that constituents want them to do so. Contact the Judiciary Committee members if you can’t attend and urge support of the Omnibus Bill, an act to improve community safety. Those in BOLD especially need to hear from us.

SENATORS- Joint Committee on the Judiciary
william.brownsberger@masenate.gov (617-722-1280)  D Belmont -Senate Committee Chair
john.keenan@masenate.gov   (617-722-1494)  D-Quincy- Senate Committee Vice-Chair   
sonia.change-diaz@masenate.gov   (617-722-1673)  D-Boston
patricia.jehlen@masenate.gov   (617-722-1578)  D-Somerville
cynthia.creem@masenate.gov   (617-722-1639)   D-Newton
richard.ross@masenate.gov   (617-722-1555)  R-Wrentham
REPRESENTATIVES – Joint Committee on the Judiciary
john.fernandes@mahouse.gov   (617-722-2396)  D-Milford-  House Committee Chair
claire.cronin@mahouse.gov   ( 617-722-2396) House Committee Vice-Chair D-Easton
colleen.garry@mahouse.gov   ( 617-722-2380) D-Dracut     
john.vellis@mahouse.gov    ( 617-722-2582) D-Westfield    
michael.day@mahouse.gov   ( 617-722-2582)  D-Winchester
paul.tucker@mahouse.gov   (617-722-2400)  D-Salem   
james.lyons@mahouse.gov    (617-722-2460) R-Andover   
jeffrey.roy@mahouse.gov     (617-722-2020) D-Franklin
evandro.carvalho@mahouse.gov   (617-722-2460)  D-Dorchester
carlos.gonzalez@mahouse.gov     (617-722-2080) D-Springfield
sheila.harrington@mahouse.gov   (617-722-2305)  R-Groton