Fair Sentencing for Youth

 

   

Archive for September, 2014

News Archive

CA PASSES AB 1276–OFFERING SOME PROTECTION FOR YOUNG PEOPLE SENT TO PRISON

Sunday, September 28th, 2014

Governor Brown signed into law AB 1276, a bill likely to prevent thousands of the state’s youngest prisoners from being initiated into their incarceration with the experience of rape, assault, and gang life.

Thank you to every one who wrote letters and made phone calls: You made this new law possible!

Approximately 4,800 people under the age of 22 are admitted to California prisons each year. Under current practice they are routinely sent to the most maximum security, violent prison units, known as “level IV yards,” where young people are especially vulnerable to assault and where they are immediately in close proximity to the facilities’ most negative influences. Those yards also have the fewest programs for education and self-help.

Assembly Bill 1276 will now require the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to carefully consider the case of each person under the age of 22 entering prison. It must conduct committee-based, specialized review for placing the person at a lower security level facility with increased access to educational and self-help programs.

The new has the potential to dramatically change the lives of thousands of young people. Fewer young adults will be raped. Fewer will be assaulted. They won’t be forced to turn to gangs for protection, or in despair. Young people will have greater access to educational programs.

Thank you for your part in making this happen.

FEEL LIKE CELEBRATING?

Help CARES, a group of family members of youth sent to adult prison, with their holiday project to raise money for gifts for murder victim family members.

Holidays are an especially hard time for people who have suffered the loss of a loved one. CARES wants to support murder victim family members during the holidays. We are collecting donations of ANY AMOUNT (no amount too small!) to buy gift cards and small gifts to send with holiday cards to members of a murder victim family support group. Send your donation to: HRW CARES Victim Holiday Gifts, 11500 Olympic Blvd., Ste. 541, Los Angeles, CA 90064. Make checks out to either Elizabeth Calvin, or HRW (HRW if you want it to be a nonprofit donation) with subject line: CARES Victim Family Gifts. If you need a receipt please let us know.

Get the guide to Youth Offender Parole

Monday, September 15th, 2014

Have questions about SB 260 and the youth offender parole process? You can find answers in the Youth Offender Parole (SB 260) guide for prisoners and their families and friends. Click here for a link  (we ask that you give us basic contact info so we can let you know in the future if there are updates to the guide.)

The guide includes:

  • An updated  guide to understanding the Youth Offender Parole process;
  • An introduction to how to prepare for a parole hearing;
  • An interview with a murder victim family member who has important words for inmates and their family members to consider; and
  • Advice from several people who successfully paroled from California prisons.

If you have problem accessing the guide, please send an email to ecalvin@hrw.org with the subject line “I cannot get the YOPH materials.”

This guide was sent in May and June 2014 to approximately 4,000 prisoners who may be eligible for Youth Offender Parole.

And, we now we have a version in Spanish:  YOPH SPANISH – SB 260 Guide for Prisoners and Their Families and Friends 5-1-14 v3.  (We hope to translate it into other languages as well, but do not yet have the resources.)

Tuesday 9/16/14 at 8pm: Call-in meeting on Youth Offender Parole and how to build the best possible parole plan.

Monday, September 15th, 2014

Just call to join us on Tuesday 9/16 at 8pm and learn how to build the best possible parole plan: What is required and how to create a great plan. Our guest speaker is Heidi Rummel, attorney and law professor.

To be paroled, a person must have a strong plan for life on the outside. Join us to hear Professor Heidi Rummel describe what is needed, and how family members and loved ones can play an important role in putting together a successful plan.

Professor Rummel is the co-director of USC School of Law’s Post-Conviction Justice Project, a clinical program where students advocate for the legal rights of convicted prisoners. She has represented hundreds of individuals at parole hearings, and was counsel in the important Lawrence case. She was instrumental in drafting and working to pass SB 260, and is playing a key role in insuring the new law is implemented well.

JUST CALL TO JOIN! Call: (805) 399-1000    Code: 817682#

Family and Friends: Please take the survey

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

TAKE OUR SURVEY ABOUT HOUSE MEETINGS! We want your opinion.

Get a Guide to Youth Offender Parole–Now In English AND Spanish

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014

Have questions about SB 260 and the youth offender parole process? You can find answers in the Youth Offender Parole (SB 260) guide for prisoners and their families and friends. Click here for a link  (we ask that you give us basic contact info so we can let you know in the future if there are updates to the guide.)

The guide includes:

  • An updated  guide to understanding the Youth Offender Parole process;
  • An introduction to how to prepare for a parole hearing;
  • An interview with a murder victim family member who has important words for inmates and their family members to consider; and
  • Advice from several people who successfully paroled from California prisons.

If you have problem accessing the guide, please send an email to ecalvin@hrw.org with the subject line “I cannot get the YOPH materials.”

This guide was sent in May and June 2014 to approximately 4,000 prisoners who may be eligible for Youth Offender Parole.

And, we now we have a version in Spanish:  YOPH SPANISH – SB 260 Guide for Prisoners and Their Families and Friends 5-1-14 v3.  (We hope to translate it into other languages as well, but do not yet have the resources.)

Learn about Youth Offender Parole/SB 260! Attend a 1-Hour Call for Family & Friends of Youth Sentenced to Adult Prison

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014

Join us for the CARES Family & Friends Call on Tuesday, September 2nd at 8:00pm

JUST CALL TO JOIN! Call: (805) 399-1000 and Code: 817682# Elizabeth Calvin of Human Rights Watch will speak on UNDERSTANDING THE NEW YOUTH OFFENDER PAROLE LAW: Learn the basics. Ask your burning questions.

ALSO!  TAKE OUR SURVEY ABOUT HOUSE MEETINGS! We want your opinion.