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FAMM’S Shaneva McReynolds to participate in press conference for two Illinois parole bills
SPRINGFIELD – FAMM’s Illinois State Consultant Dr. Shaneva McReynolds will join a press conference advocating for two parole bills that provide second chances for incarcerated individuals in Illinois state prisons – Earned Reentry and Elder Parole – at the Springfield Capitol Building on Tuesday, March 21 at 11 a.m.
The other participants are State Representative Carol Ammons, the sponsor of the earned reentry bill; State Representative Justin Slaughter, the sponsor of the elder parole bill; and the advocacy organization ElderParole.org.
“Harsh sentences have filled Illinois prisons with more than 10,000 people serving sentences of at least 15 years,” said McReynolds. “Many of these incarcerated individuals have earned a second chance in life and pose no threat to our communities, but Illinois lacks parole mechanisms to bring them home to their families.
“The Earned Reentry and Elder Parole bill are safe, responsible ways to release people who aren’t a threat and re-focus public safety resources on people committing crimes today.”
The Earned Reentry bill would allow the Illinois Prison Review Board to determine whether a candidate has met the criteria to be paroled after serving 20, 25 or 35 years. The Elder Parole bill would enable the Illinois Prison Review Board to consider whether an incarcerated individual serving a life sentence who is at least 55 years old and has served 25 years should be paroled.
Earlier this month McReynolds also testified at an Illinois House Judiciary Committee hearing on the Earned Reentry bill. FAMM has long advocated for second chances legislation in Illinois.
Examples of those efforts last year included the organization issuing a 28-page report called “Time for Justice: The Urgent Need for Second Chances In Illinois’ Sentencing System,” and McReynolds testifying before the Illinois Resentencing Task Force about the need to create legislative mechanisms for second chances.
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 an inflexible and draconian punishment structure has led to reforms to sentencing and prison policies at the state and federal levels 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 safely reduce incarceration, save taxpayer dollars, and keep families together. Founded in 1991, FAMM has secured bold sentencing and prison reform across the country while elevating the voices of directly impacted individuals and families.
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