Joint Statement: Baltimore City Council Should Reject Mandatory Minimum Sentence
WASHINGTON – Today, the following criminal justice and civil rights organizations issued this joint statement in response to Baltimore City’s proposed handgun safety law, which will be debated before the City Council on Tuesday, July 25, and contains a mandatory minimum sentence of one year for gun possession:
We collectively urge Baltimore City to reject the mandatory minimum sentence requirement contained in its proposed illegal handgun possession bill, Bill 17-0111. Decades of failed local, state, and federal policies tell us that mandatory minimum sentences do not deter crime or increase public safety. We know how this ends: increased incarceration rates, jail overcrowding, astronomical costs to taxpayers, increased racial disparity, and fewer resources for crime prevention, victim services, and smarter policing. Enacting a failed policy is not the answer to gun violence and won’t make our communities safer.
Church of Scientology National Affairs Office
Drug Policy Alliance
Families Against Mandatory Minimums
Justice Policy Institute
Law Enforcement Action Partnership
NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc.
National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers