That is the first of three doses of criminal justice reality described in this introductory episode by Justice Voices founder and host, David Risley, former career federal prosecutor and former Director of Public Safety Policy in the Illinois Governor’s office.Reality dose #2: Prisons do only one thing well — incapacitation of dangerous criminals. But, in FY 2018 half the Illinois prison population (for example) consisted of people in Department of Corrections custody for only 8 months or less, at a true cost of almost $70,000 per inmate per year. The huge cost of imprisoning low-level, non-dangerous offenders is taxpayer money that would be far better spent on more effective local solutions to local crime using local resources, supported when necessary by state funding. Reality dose #3: In Illinois, 43% of people released from prison return to prison within 3 years (lower than the national average) at a true cost of over $150,000 for each such event of recidivism. Recycling people back to prison is far more expensive than the cost of investing in proven in-prison programs and local support systems to enable returning citizens to successfully reenter the community after release from prison without returning to criminal activity.We need to shift from a punishment paradigm of criminal justice to a problem-solving paradigm.When Mr. Risley left the Illinois Governor’s Office as Director of Public Safety Policy, he had reached the conclusion that the best way to change public policy regarding criminal justice system reform is to change public opinion, and the best way to change public opinion is by sharing the stories of people with real-life experience with crime and the criminal justice system.Real-life stories have the power to illuminate reality far better than facts and figures – and to change hearts, as well as minds.That’s what Justice Voices is all about – to share stories that need to be told, voices that need to be heard regarding crime, criminal justice, and related issues.Justice Voices website: https://justicevoices.orgDavid Risley’s background: https://david-risley.comFinal Report of the Illinois State Commission on Criminal Justice and Sentencing Reform (Parts I & II) December 2016: http://www.icjia.org/cjreform2015/index.htmlIllinois Sentencing Policy Advisory Council: https://spac.illinois.gov/
David E. RisleyDavid E. Risley–Making democracy workDavid E. Risley professional website. Expert in Egyptian judiciary, Egypt legal system, Egypt law, Iraqi High Tribunal, Marsh Arabs of Iraq, rule of law, judicial training, prosecutor training, national security law, international humanitarian law, and developing core institutions of democracy.
Illinois State Commission on Criminal Justice and Sentencing ReformWelcome to the Illinois State Commission on Criminal Justice and Sentencing ReformThe Illinois State Commission on Criminal Justice and Sentencing Reform
spac.illinois.govSPAC | Illinois Sentencing Policy Advisory CouncilThe Illinois Sentencing Policy Advisory Council (SPAC) was created to more accurately determine the consequences of sentencing policy decisions.