Think Justice Blog


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  • Mary Crowley
    Mary Crowley
March 24, 2017

How Connecticut Reimagines Prison for Young Men

“Tell me something you’ve learned while you’ve been here.” “I’ve learned to listen.” “I’ve learned that we can be part of a brotherhood, and be the change we want to be.” “I’ve gained a purpose, an opportunity to give something back.” Is this an exchange betwe...

  • Rebecca Dealy
March 21, 2017

CNN Article on Elder Abuse Highlights Increased Need for Guardianship Services

CNN recently wrote an article titled “Sick, Dying, and Raped in America’s Nursing Homes,” detailing their own lengthy investigation of elder abuse within nursing homes and assisted living facilities around the country. CNN interviewed families of the abused, ...

  • Leah Morgan
    Leah Morgan
March 03, 2017

“Just Call Me Bala”

In 2010, Vera began working with the Ohio Green Prison Project (OGPP), a program to design and implement green vocational training and reentry programs that benefit incarcerated individuals and reduce the environmental impact and operating costs of prison syst...

  • Erika Turner
    Erika Turner
February 23, 2017

This Year’s Oscar Film Nominees Highlight the Shared History of Black American Life and Mass Incarceration

For the last several years, the Academy Awards have taken place during Black History Month.  Considering the role that race and incarceration play in the films nominated for best picture, this year presents a timely opportunity for reflection. Of the three nom...

  • Vera Institute of Justice
February 15, 2017

Vera Mourns the Passing of Senior Program Associate Amy Judy: 1962-2017

Vera mourns the loss of Amy Judy, a senior program associate in our Center on Victimization and Safety (CVS), who passed away this past weekend. Amy had been at Vera for almost two years, but has been a part of the Vera family for well over 15 years, lending h...

  • Lionel  Smith
    Lionel Smith
January 26, 2017

Series: Addressing the Overuse of Segregation in U.S. Prisons and Jails

Why We’re Studying the Causes and Consequences of Solitary Confinement

Every day, tens of thousands of incarcerated people are held in restrictive housing (commonly known as “solitary confinement” or “segregation”) in America’s prisons and jails.  Confined to a cell no larger than a parking space for at least 23 hours a day, isol...

  • Krista Larson
    Krista Larson
  • Hernan Carvente
    Hernan Carvente
January 24, 2017

Juvenile Justice Systems Still Grappling with Legacy of the “Superpredator” Myth

In the 1990s, sociologists inaccurately predicted that there would be a wave of the dangerous “superpredators”—young people capable of profound violence and different from any we as a nation had seen before, based on the pseudo-scientific idea that there were ...

  • Sarah  Zarba
    Sarah Zarba
January 19, 2017

Series: Gender and Justice in America

More Incarcerated Women Deserve Clemency

Former President Obama commuted the sentences of more people in one year than any other president in our nation’s history.  The total number of clemencies—including pardons and sentence commutations granted? 1,715. The number of women granted clemency? 106. ...

  • Kristi  DiLallo
    Kristi DiLallo
January 17, 2017

Series: Gender and Justice in America

How the Criminalization of Adolescence Fuels the School-to-Prison Pipeline

In her new play on the school-to-prison pipeline, Notes from the Field, actress and playwright Anna Deveare Smith reenacts interviews with 17 people from the education and criminal justice systems. The school-to-prison pipeline is a national trend in which chi...

  • Allison Hastings
    Allison Hastings
January 13, 2017

Lifting of Funding Restrictions Paves the Way for Incarcerated Survivors of Sexual Abuse to Access Victim Services

On December 31, 2016, the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) published a summary of changes to the rules governing how victim service agencies can use Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) assistance funds. The rule changes, which went into e...

  • Laura Simich
    Laura Simich
  • Jacob  Kang-Brown
    Jacob Kang-Brown
December 20, 2016

Police and Communities Must Work Together to Support Victims of Hate Crimes

After the 2016 presidential election, unusually large numbers of children and adults all over the United States have reacted by expressing hate, bigotry, and racism, contrary to our best principles of equality. Hate crime has been unleashed—with swastikas pain...

  • Kristi  DiLallo
    Kristi DiLallo
December 12, 2016

Recent Wins on Marijuana Signal a Change in Drug Policy Nationally

This election season, many Americans overwhelmingly voted in favor of marijuana reform. California, Maine, Massachusetts, and Nevada approved the legalization of recreational marijuana, while voters in Arkansas, Florida, and North Dakota approved new medical ...