Act now: submit a public comment on parole reform

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New York needs parole reform, and this is our chance to make a change.

On December 18, 2013, the New York Board of Parole posted their revised regulations guiding parole release decisions.

Unfortunately, these regulations do not lay the basis for true change.

Instead, they justify continuing the parole board’s current practice: refusing to release people from prison even when they pose a low risk of endangering public safety and show a clear ability to successfully reintegrate into society.

The board’s refusal to grant parole to eligible applicants is unfair and wastes taxpayer dollars.

Right now, incarcerated people, advocates, organizations, and family members can raise a chorus of our voices to push for change in the parole system by commenting on the regulations.

Until February 1, 2014, the public can comment on the Board of Parole’s proposed revisions and on the problems with current parole practices.   By law, the Board of Parole must read and analyze all public comments. View a listing of all the public comments submitted thus far by advocates.

With your help, we can demand that the parole board create clear regulations to begin doing what parole boards should: release people for whom further incarceration serves no purpose—neither protecting public safety nor advancing personal growth and rehabilitation.

Will you join us by submitting a public comment before February 1, 2014?

We’ve put together a set of talking points you can include in your comment letter.

You can write your own letter, using the talking points, or start with a sample comment letter we’ve created for you.

In order to ensure that your comments are properly received and reviewed, please submit your comments to all of the following by FEBRUARY 1, 2014:

1. NY DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS & COMMUNITY SUPERVISION

a. by email: terrence.tracy[@]doccs.ny.gov

or

b. by mail: Terrence X. Tracy, Counsel, Board of Parole, Dept. of Corrections & Community Supervision

Parole Board

The Harriman State Campus -Bldg. #2

1220 Washington Ave.

Albany, New York  12226-2050

2. NY SENATE ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS REVIEW COMMITTEE:

a. by email: JKoury[@]NYSenate.gov 

or

b. by mail: John Koury, Director, ARRC

The New York State Capitol Building

Albany, New York 12247

3. CORRECTIONAL ASSOCIATION OF NEW YORK:

a. by email: MFarid[@]correctionalassociation.org

or

b. by mail: Mujahid Farid

Correctional Association of New York

2090 Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvd. #200

New York, NY 10027

If you have questions, please contact Mujahid Farid, lead organizer for the Release Aging People in Prison Campaign, by calling the Correctional Association of New York – 212-254-5700.