As we step into these summer months, CURB is both emboldened by recent victories in the fight against county jail and state prison expansion and aware of the huge resources we must accrue in confronting the systems that attempt to further incarcerate our loved ones and community members.
To celebrate our work we want to invite you to an art auction fundraiser that will be held at Human Resources.
This fundraiser will be essential in providing the resources to continue our fight and build on our recent victories! Read the rest of Save the Date: Break It Down Art Auction! »
Last week, SB 966 (the RISE Act), fell one vote short of making it out of the Assembly Public Safety Committee, ending its journey in the current legislative cycle. The bill would have repealed the sentence enhancement for most prior drug felony convictions, a vicious tool of the War on Drugs that has torn thousands of families apart, destroyed countless lives, and left our communities less safe.
After passing out of the Senate, we were disappointed that two moderate Democrats, Evan Low and Miguel Santiago, did not join the other Democrats on the Public Safety Committee in voting for the bill. As a result, the bill did not move on.
But the fight for justice and humanity is not over! Our incredible people power has sparked conversations in the media, received powerful endorsements, gathered support from more than 140 organizations across the state, and changed the way legislators think about sentence enhancements. Read the rest of RISE Act stalls, but we fight on »
It is now the beginning of the new fiscal year in California, as Governor Brown signed the state’s 2016-17 budget on Monday. This year, thanks to your incredible action and passionate advocacy, the idea of moving resources away from law enforcement and imprisonment gained serious traction.
But law enforcement continues to gain power as well, and unfortunately, they managed to pry even more money for policing and imprisonment in the state budget.
For the first time ever, we got a major win as we persuaded the budget subcommittees of both houses to reject the Governor’s proposal for jail construction money and redirect the funds to prevention and treatment. But he managed to strong-arm the legislature into inserting it back into the budget, in the form of lease-revenue bonds. Read the rest of What the new CA budget means for us »
OAKLAND – CURB co-coordinator Lizzie Buchen issued this statement today following Gov. Jerry Brown’s signing of the 2016-2017 budget:
“The budget signed today by Governor Jerry Brown reflects Sacramento’s relentless reliance on incarceration. Although the budget includes some repairs to the social safety net, it nonetheless aggressively builds up California’s system of imprisonment, adding another $270 million to the state’s large-scale jail construction program, extending contracts for private prisons, increasing the number of prison guards, and funding construction on a dilapidated prison in Norco that has been slated for closure since 2012.
“This reinforcement of the state’s vast system of imprisonment comes as legislators, the governor, and the general public have recognized that incarceration is failing people in low-income communities of color. Not only did the voters overwhelmingly choose prevention and treatment over punishment for low-level offenses through Prop 47, but the Governor is pushing his own ballot initiative to reduce sentences for people in prison. In the legislature, both the Senate and Assembly budget subcommittees voted to reject more jail construction. However, after the backroom deal-brokering in the last-minute budget negotiations, the funding for jail construction returned to the budget, a sign that law enforcement continues to gain power in Sacramento and remains tenacious in prying money from the legislature. Read the rest of Press Statement: CURB responds to Governor’s support for more incarceration in new budget »
The fight continues in Sacramento. With all his cries for fiscal caution and his claims about reducing California’s sky-high incarceration rates, Governor Jerry Brown is on the verge of approving $270 million in high-interest loans to build new jails. This is the fourth round of jail construction funds approved since 2007, and there’s no sign that it would be the last.
Thank you to all those folks that came out to Mother’s Day in May and to the Care Not Cages Art Party this past week. This weekend we are celebrating Father’s Day at the Twin Towers and we want to invite you to join us.
Will we see you on Father’s Day? Read the rest of Check out the Mother’s Day Video & join us on Father’s Day! »
This week marks the 45th anniversary of the War on Drugs. Join us today in taking action to pass the RISE Act, one step in undoing the harm this war has caused on our communities.
In a statement to Congress on Drug Abuse Prevention and Control on June 17th 1971, President Nixon declared drug abuse “public enemy number one,” unleashing an attack on low income communities and communities of color.
The War on Drugs caused soaring arrest rates that deliberately targeted Black people. Nixon dramatically increased the size and presence of federal drug control agencies and pushed through measures like mandatory sentencing and no-knock warrants. In the 1980s, during the height of the drug war hysteria, the number of arrests for all crimes had risen by 28%, while the number of arrests for drug offenses rose 126%.
Our coalition has been working tirelessly toward a different vision for California.
With the help of donors like you, we have been able to raise almost $3,000, supporting our work of building a people-powered movement throughout the state of California to oppose Sacramento’s prison and jail expansion plans.
During this month, our growing force persuaded the Senate and Assembly Budget Subcommittees to reject the state funding for new jails.
Lizzie Buchen, Californians United for a Responsible Budget
Tonight, elected officials in the Budget Conference Committee overrode the actions of the Budget Subcommittees and intense community opposition by approving $270 million for jail construction in the form of lease revenue bonds.
During Budget Subcommittee hearings over the past few weeks, both the Senate and the Assembly rejected $250 million in general funds for county jail construction, a decision that came after communities impacted by incarceration from across California advocated to reject the funding and re-direct it towards community-based programs and services and alternatives to incarceration. Read the rest of Budget committee about-face indebts future budgets for jail construction as county jails defy state law »