Issues

Issues

End Cash Bail and Mass Incarceration

End Cash Bail and Mass Incarceration

End Cash Bail and Mass Incarceration

The NYS Attorney General has the opportunity to take a transformative role in the fight to end mass incarceration. As the chief law enforcement officer in the state, the attorney general has a moral obligation to play a leadership role in reforming a system that infringes on the basic human and legal rights of our citizens.

We must examine fully the state of the criminal justice system. As AG, I will investigate and report on injustices at each point of contact with the system; these include policing in our schools and neighborhoods, arraignment and pre-trial detention, adequate public defense, incarceration practices, parole and probation, and re-entry rights and services.

According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, 70 percent of people in jail are innocent in the eyes of the law — men and women awaiting trial — a majority of whom are young men of color, caged up because they cannot afford to post bail. This policy of cash bail serves to criminalize poverty, and often ensures inmates suffer further abuse and violence within the system.

Mass incarceration is the legacy of slavery and it is inextricably linked to the system of oppression that locks black people behind bars, and out of jobs, schools, and markets. As Attorney General I will advocate several necessary reforms to ensure a moral and just criminal justice system:

  • Discovery Reform
  • Speedy Trials
  • Legalization of marijuana
  • Re-entry programs
  • Changing the culture of prosecution