Think Justice Blog


While Announcing Landmark Reforms, Cuomo Highlights Further Need for Justice Reform Across New York State

Across New York, momentum is building to end mass incarceration. Yesterday, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced in his State of the State address that he will propose the elimination of cash bail in certain cases, as well as several other criminal justice reforms—including speedy trial and improved due process—during the 2018 legislative session.  Here...

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  • Karina Schroeder
    Karina Schroeder
January 04, 2018
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  • Vera Staff
    Vera Staff
February 22, 2018

Key Takeaways from Pod Save The People's First-Ever Live Show

This weekend, inspired by crowd-sourced suggestions of the best criminal justice podcasts from 2017, we attended and live-tweeted the first-ever live show from the popular social justice podcast, Pod Save The People, hosted by DeRay McKesson, Sam Sinyangwe, Cl...

  • Hana Le
    Hana Le
February 20, 2018

Expanding Housing Access for Formerly Incarcerated People

Everyone deserves a place to call home. However, for many people leaving our nation’s prisons and jails, the main barrier to successful reentry is access to safe and affordable housing. Formerly incarcerated people often do not have the financial means to rent...

  • Karina Schroeder
    Karina Schroeder
February 16, 2018

How Systemic Racism Keeps Millions of Black People from Voting

Last year, we wrote about an increasing number of states working to restore voting rights for people with felony conviction histories. That trend seems to be continuing in 2018. According to the Brennan Center of Justice, as of late January this year legislato...

  • Vera Staff
    Vera Staff
February 14, 2018

New York City Mayor Moves Forward on Plans to Close Rikers

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced today that he will move forward on plans to replace the Rikers Island jail complex with smaller, borough-based jail facilities. The mayor and the New York City Council reached an agreement to develop a single public...

  • Gerard Robinson
    Gerard Robinson
February 13, 2018

A Commonwealth of Second Chances

As a former secretary of education for the Commonwealth of Virginia who served under Governor Bob McDonnell, I know firsthand the importance of education to the economic and social well-being of the more than 8 million people who call Virginia home. For the mo...

  • Susan  DeMaio
    Susan DeMaio
February 12, 2018

Guardians and the End-of-Life Decision Making Dilemma

As America’s population ages, families and patient surrogates are increasingly finding themselves making difficult end-of-life decisions for those who can no longer make those decisions for themselves. Next of kin and court-appointed guardians must make these ...

  • Vera Staff
    Vera Staff
February 02, 2018

Black History Month Is A Much-Needed Chance to Discuss Our Collective Future

Fifty-five years after Dr. Martin Luther King’s “Letter from a Birmingham Jail,” black people make up 40 percent of America’s incarcerated population—despite comprising just 13 percent of the general population.  They also make up 40 percent of people who are ...

  • Vera Staff
    Vera Staff
February 01, 2018

First Lady of NYC Announces $6 Million Plan to Break the Cycle of Incarceration for Women at Rikers

Today, the First Lady of New York City, Chirlane McCray, announced a $6 million plan to help reduce the population of incarcerated women in the city. The proposal will provide much-needed support to NYC’s incarcerated women by improving the frequency of family...

  • Vera Staff
    Vera Staff
January 26, 2018

New Survey Aims to Learn How Police Involve Community in Decision-Making

New York University’s Policing Project recently launched a survey on police-community engagement. The survey aims to learn from as many community members and police departments as possible about the steps departments have taken to involve the public in key dec...

  • Rebecca Neusteter
    Rebecca Neusteter
January 26, 2018

Vera’s Policing Program Launches "Emerging Issues in American Policing" Quarterly Digest

As increased national attention has focused on troubling policing incidents and calls to reform policing practices, the need for empirical research and lived examples of effective approaches in modern day policing continues to grow. Although a great volume of ...

  • Vera Staff
    Vera Staff
January 25, 2018

Overwhelming Majority of Americans Support Criminal Justice Reform, New Poll Finds

A new poll released today reveals that three-fourths of Americans believe the country’s criminal justice system needs significant improvements. Conducted by Public Opinion Strategies on behalf of Justice Action Network, the poll also indicates that support for...

  • Leah  Pope
    Leah Pope
January 24, 2018

The Role of Jails in Combatting the Opioid Crisis

A report released today from the Pew Charitable Trusts sheds new light on what has long been true but is often overlooked:  local jails play a vital role in our nation’s health care safety net, working often as the default response to people with mental health...