50 First Step Act Beneficiaries and Their Families to Visit Washington to Thank Lawmakers - FAMM


50 First Step Act Beneficiaries and Their Families to Visit Washington to Thank Lawmakers

Categories: Congress, Press Release

Rabiah Burks, 202-822-6700

50 First Step Act Beneficiaries and their families to Visit Washington to Thank Lawmakers 

WASHINGTON – This month marks the one-year anniversary of the passage of the First Step Act, a federal criminal justice reform that has already brought more than 5,000 people home to their families sooner. On December 9-10, nearly 50 First Step Act beneficiaries and their families will visit Capitol Hill to thank the lawmakers who championed the bill.

“Every day home matters, and we want lawmakers to meet some of the many families that were reunited sooner with their loved ones because of passage of the First Step Act,” said Kevin Ring, President of FAMM. “It’s been a great year meeting people and families who have benefited from the reforms, we wanted to bring some of that joy to the folks who made this all possible.”

The First Step Act comprised several overdue sentencing and prison reforms that have provided some relief to tens of thousands of people in federal prison. According to recent reports from the U.S. Sentencing Commission and the Federal Bureau of Prisons, since the First Step was enacted:

  •  Approximately 2,000 people serving excessive sentences for crack cocaine have received sentence reductions because of the act’s provision making the Fair Sentencing Act retroactive. The average sentence reduction was 70 months. This provision alone has shaved a total of nearly 12,000 years of unnecessary prison time from people’s sentences.
  •  More than 3,000 people were granted immediate release due to the law’s increase in good time credit. More than 150,000 will eventually receive additional time off due to this provision and come home early.
  •  More than 100 very sick and elderly people have received compassionate release, thanks, in part, to the reform that allows prisoners to appeal denials of their requests for early release to the courts.

To arrange interviews with any of the First Step Act beneficiaries who will visit Washington or to speak with an expert about the bill contact Rabiah A. Burks at rburks@famm.org.

For nearly three decades, FAMM has united the voices of affected families, the formerly incarcerated, and a range of stakeholders and advocates to fight for a more fair and effective justice system. FAMM’s focus on ending a one-size-fits-all punishment structure has led to reforms to sentencing and prison policies in 6 states and is paving the way to programs that support rehabilitation for the 94% of all prisoners who will return to our neighborhoods one day.


FAMM is a national nonpartisan advocacy organization that promotes fair and effective criminal justice policies that safeguard taxpayer dollars and keep our communities safe. Founded in 1991, FAMM is helping transform America’s criminal justice system by uniting the voices of impacted families and individuals and elevating the issues all across the country.