California Budget and Legislation

Governor's Plan Runs Into Resistance

by Max Pringle
Aug 27, 2013


California Governor Jerry Brown’s proposal to alleviate prison overcrowding is generating opposition from activists who oppose adding more space to the state’s prison system.

“There are clear, viable alternatives to reduce the prison population, including compassionate release, including expanding good time credits. So it’s a false choice that the governor is making,” says Zachary Norris with the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights.

The Fight Against Putting Teens in Solitary

by Toshio Meronek
Aug 21, 2013


A lawsuit against East Bay juvenile authorities and legislation in Sacramento seek to greatly limit the practice of locking up youth in solitary confinement for months at a time.

Change to juvenile prison time could save state millions

by Rina Palta
Jun 27, 2012


With the passage of Wednesday budget, the state stands to save hundreds of millions of dollars — and save juveniles in the state's youth correctional system years of  incarceration. The Ella Baker Center has worked tirelessly for the past few years to bring an end to this harmful practice. KPCC's Rina Palta talks with Sumayyah Waheed of the Ella Baker Center about this important victory. 

Civil-rights leaders committed to bill that makes drug possession a misdemeanor

Feb 27, 2012


...introduction of legislation in California that would make the maximum penalty for possession of drugs for personal use one year in county jail rather than the current three years.

Legislation would Limit Use of Solitary Confinement at Juvenile Facilities

Feb 24, 2012


Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco/San Mateo) introduced legislation that will define and limit the use of solitary confinement at state and county juvenile correctional facilities.

Private Prisons Profit From Pain

by Jakada Imani
Feb 23, 2012


I've been working on issues of police accountability, locked-up youth, violence, and community investment for a long time. Sometimes I think that no example of injustice could still surprise me. I was recently proved wrong.

Update: Calif. budget crunchers hear youth-prison closure debate

by Susan Ferriss
Feb 09, 2012


Complaints by both a current ward at Ventura and the Ella Baker Human Rights Center in San Francisco include charges of overuse of solitary confinement — a previously documented practice — filthy showers, toilets that overflow and leak and air vents that smell like sewage.

Prison Media Access Bill Passes California Assembly

Jan 26, 2012


Assemblymember Tom Ammiano’s bill (D-San Francisco) to restore media access to prisoners, AB 1270, passed the California Assembly today. The bill would remove restrictions on pre-arranged in-person interviews with specific prison inmates. Since these restrictions went into effect in 1996, eight versions of the bill have been vetoed by three different governors.  

Fight brewing over historic California plan to close last three youth prisons

by Susan Ferriss
Jan 25, 2012


California, often a trendsetter, could make history if it approves Gov. Jerry Brown’s bid to close all state-run youth prisons and eliminate its state Division of Juvenile Justice.


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