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The Executive Session on the Future of Justice Policy

The Executive Session on the Future of Justice Policy brings together more than two dozen researchers, practitioners, policy makers, advocates, and community representatives to generate and cultivate new ideas around the work to reimagine justice.  The Executive Session was created with support from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation as part of the Safety and Justice Challenge, which seeks to reduce over-incarceration by changing the way America thinks about and uses jails.

Executive Session Papers

While the Executive Session meetings themselves are off-the-record, Session members publish papers intended to catalyze thinking and policy reform solutions that can reduce incarceration and develop new responses to violence and other social problems that can emerge under conditions of poverty and racial inequality.

Preliminary Thoughts on Reimagining Judging | By Nancy Gertner (December 2021)

January 2022 | Executive Session on the Future of Justice Policy Reimagining judging EXECUTIVE SUMMARY FULL REPORT PRESS RELEASE Overview Judges have traditionally been resistant to most types of reform: even when changed laws broadened the scope of judges’ sentencing discretion, many judges have been hesitant to utilize this development. We must find ways to…

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Beyond the Easiest Cases | By Greisa Martínez Rosas and Matt Desmond (December 2021)

December 2021 | Executive Session on the Future of Justice Policy beyond the easiest cases EXECUTIVE SUMMARY FULL REPORT PRESS RELEASE Overview In this paper, the authors examine the power of narratives to impact cultural, political, and policy change, arguing that narratives based on contingent morality – that is, oversimplifying people into “deserving heroes” or…

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What Makes a City Safe: Viable Community Safety Strategies that Do Not Rely on Police or Prison | By Amanda Alexander and Danielle Sered (December 2021)

December 2021 | Executive Session on the Future of Justice Policy What Makes a city safe: viable community safety strategies that do not rely on police or prisons BOSTON REVIEW PUBLICATION FULL REPORT EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Overview Divesting from law enforcement is not merely compatible with reducing interpersonal violence in communities; it is necessary. To understand…

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Towards A New Framework For Achieving Decarceration: A Review Of The Research Literature On Social Investments | By Laura Hawks, Evangeline (Evie) Lopoo, Lisa Puglisi, and Emily Wang (October 2021)

October 2021 | Executive Session on the Future of Justice Policy Towards A New Framework For Achieving Decarceration: A Review Of The Research On Social Investments EXECUTIVE SUMMARY FULL REPORT PRESS RELEASE Overview Recent calls to decarcerate – to reduce reliance on the criminal legal system as a means to surveil and punish – have…

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Protecting and Serving Victims — Their Way, Not Ours | By Melissa Nelson and Kevin Thom (June 2021)

June 2021 | Executive Session on the Future of Justice Policy Protecting and Serving Victims – Their Way, Not Ours EXECUTIVE SUMMARY FULL REPORT PRESS RELEASE Overview As a prosecutor and a sheriff, we have seen countless and compelling moments where the best of our work has translated into positive victim support in the aftermath…

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The Power of Parsimony | By Daryl Atkinson and Jeremy Travis (May 2021)

May 2021 | Executive Session on the Future of Justice Policy The Power of Parsimony Full Report Executive Summary Overview As our country comes to terms with the damage caused by our excessive reliance on punishment as a response to crime, the use of the criminal law to sustain racial hierarchies, and the ways the…

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Harm Reduction at the Center of Incarceration | By Dr. Nneka Jones Tapia (April 2021)

Everyone within a correctional facility––both the staff and the people housed there––is exposed to trauma at a significantly higher rate than the general population. In this sense, the institution itself is traumatic. And because of the connective tissue that exists among all of us, the effect of this traumatic system spreads beyond the walls of an institution and into families and communities. Physical and procedural transformation of correctional facilities is imperative to promoting harm reduction at large. The STAAC framework for harm reduction can guide necessary shifts in correctional system policy, procedure, and training to support the health of correctional staff and their families, the people housed in the facility and their families, and the broader community.

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Social Fabric: A New Model for Public Safety and Vital Neighborhoods | By Elizabeth Glazer and Patrick Sharkey (March 2021)

Should the police own safety? For the past forty years, localities across the country have responded with a resounding “yes,” as the primary response to crime has been to call upon the police and criminal justice system. That approach has come with harms, long understood in communities of color and further underscored last summer by the protests in the wake of George Floyd’s death. These harms undermine the trust that should be the very foundation of any system of justice. This paper argues that there is a different and more durable model, based on the oldest of ideas and eminently doable, especially in this moment of pandemic-straitened budgets: tight-knit communities, where residents are brought together through local institutions and have access to basic civic resources, are the places where safety thrives.

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Learned Helplessness, Criminalization, and Victimization in Vulnerable Youth | By Elizabeth Trejos-Castillo, Evangeline Lopoo, and Anamika Dwivedi (December 2020)

DECEMBER 2020 | Executive Session on the Future of Justice Policy Learned Helplessness, Criminalization, and Victimization in Vulnerable Youth Full Report Executive Summary Overview The United States detains youth in a multitude of settings – the criminal legal system, immigrant detention centers, the foster care system, and more – at rates far higher than global…

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Understanding Health Reform as Justice Reform | By Lynda Zeller and Jackie Prokop (November 2020)

November 2020 | Executive Session on the Future of Justice Policy Understanding Health Reform as Justice Reform Full Report Executive Summary Press Release Overview Justice reform strategies to reduce mass incarceration will not be successful without healthcare and social supports for persons with chronic health conditions. This intersection of health and justice holds the potential…

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Meet Our Executive Session Members

More than two-dozen individuals from a diverse range of professions and roles comprise our Executive Session. By bringing together diverse perspectives, the Executive Session tests and pushes its participants to challenge their own thinking and consider new options.


Join the conversation

@IDOC_Illinois Director of Corrections @JROB2 and Dr. @NnekaTapia engaging and inspiring members on how @HolisticSafety is the vehicle for ... meaningful improvements in #corrections @Chicago_Beyond #harmreduction #humanity Great conference @CLALeadership

If you’re interested to hear more from Nneka Jones Tapia @NnekaTapia, we were lucky enough to have her as a guest on our Shades of Freedom... podcast recently.

One by one, leaders of the Boudin recall are being exposed for corruption and fraud. An overview below, with receipts. First up, Leanna ... Louie.

People will keep dying because "you're on your own" is the official health policy of the US government, the ruling elites that employ you, ... the out of touch commentators, the democratic party that prioritizes elections over lives, and their political instruments at the CDC.


We're thrilled to announce that Fred Hampton Jr (@ChairmanFredJr1) will be joining our conversation TONIGHT alongside ... legendary @LACANetwork Civil Rights Organizer General Dogon! Join us in celebrating #BlackAugust! Info here:

Good morning!

Your past mistakes are meant to guide you, not define you.

We lost a shining light and a great leader, advocate, friend. I know you will be fighting for us all Lewis! RIP

A picture of my grandfather, Clem.

Tomorrow is the 2022 ALS Jacksonville CEO Soak to raise awareness/funds to fight this disease. He is one... of the reasons I am taking the plunge.

Thanks to everyone who has joined — there is still room on the team.

#NewProfilePic for an important event — the 2022 ALS CEO Soak, to raise funds/awareness to fight this disease.

I'm again taking the ... plunge to honor my friend, Jimmy Judge — who is in the fight — and my grandfather, Clem Corn.

I'd love for you to join me:

You have truly made a difference, @KGHOPE. Thank you for all of your hard work.


Listen to @ChiefMoir and I discuss resilience and stillness (and New York accents) with Dr. @MFreemanvegas ...

Never realized how full my my heart aka “bunny” could get!

THIS was an honor of a lifetime. To be a guest on The Hollow Bunny ... Leadership Podcast w/ hosts @ziman_kristen @ChiefMoir & producer/Siren Blower @tedmadden

My utmost respect & gratitude

Watch and learn.

Thank you DaBaby for bringing us together. The Court and community must reimaginejustice together.

It’s time for the courts to reckon with the ways we maintain systems of oppression and white supremacy. It’s time to #reimagineJustice ... for our Charlotte community.

The most serious consequence of the rapid militarization of American police forces, however, is the subtle evolution in the mentality of the... "men in blue" from "peace officer" to soldier. @RSI

NEW episode:

Max Politics Podcast: Experts Call for a Federal Receiver for Rikers Island, with @LizGlazerNYC & @VinSchiraldi ... — LISTEN:

"Youth #prisons in the #USA have a #poor #record of brutality and #failure, only exceeded by the failure of putting #kids in #adult ... prisons," writes
@VinSchiraldi. @CUJusticeLab

Hear @LizGlazerNYC, former director of the Mayor's Office of Criminal Justice, & @VinSchiraldi, former Correction Commissioner, on why ... they're calling for a federal takeover of Rikers, other steps to address the crisis in city jails, & how we got here:

New Yorkers in need of emergency cash assistance during a crisis can lean on @NYCHRA. Join the Office of Neighborhood Safety in Harlem this ... Thursday to learn how you can utilize One Shot Deal to meet your needs in an unexpected situation.

Butler residents! 🗣️
Join the Office of Neighborhood Safety and @NYCHRA at the One Shot Deal event on Monday to learn how you can ... access financial support during a time of crisis. For more information visit:

For city residents in need of emergency cash assistance, @NYCHRA and the Office of Neighborhood Safety have your back! With One Shot Deal, ... you can receive financial support to help with job loss, theft, and other crises. Join us tomorrow to learn about these resources.

TOMORROW! Check out this panel on harnessing data to transform youth justice → July 28 @ 11 am ET! Register to learn more: ...

New paper on mental health disparities in solitary confinement:

The Columbia Justice Lab is hiring! We're looking for graduating seniors and other recent graduates to work on the Square One Project, and ... research projects on Rikers Island and solitary confinement. Please spread the word and apply.

47% of Black trans people were victims of the system of mass incarceration in 2020, a shockingly high percentage from this report that ... speaks volumes about the injustices constantly faced by the LGBTQIA+ community. We have a responsibility to do better.

Join us!

We need to start calling these policies out for what they really are: racist rulings that serve no purpose other than to uphold white male ... supremacy and criminalize communities of color.

Why transform justice in Multnomah County? Because the old answers to criminal behavior, like prosecution and incarceration, will not ... permanently solve the problems of today and tomorrow. We all deserve better. This vision for a just future shows the way.

“28 days of drug treatment didn’t work for their son.”

“Oh, he must a need a longer stay.”

The logical fallacy of when something... doesn’t work to just do it *more* reminds of the current resurgence in proposals to say, arrest drug dealers or make drug possession a felony.

Seder won’t pass us over this year

Big red barn near the German tent has lots of animals to feed. Sgt Snanda Swanson adores the wallaby or baby kangaroo.

The results of drug-impaired driving could be crushing!

We thank Deputy Kari Smith for six years with the PCSO. She will be joining the Wall School District 51-5 as a paraprofessional. ... @wallchamber

+ op-ed: ...

Wise words from @BrennanCenter marking an important inflection point in federal criminal justice policy. Now the test: can federal $$ ... actually create incentives to reduce prison populations? @lbeisen @SentencingProj @CouncilonCJ @WesternBruce @FAMMFoundation

Honored to work alongside these impressive advocates for people who are burdened by unaffordable drug costs. How could our country place the... profits of pharmaceutical companies over the health of Americans? A great victory for the people. Kudos to @Arnold_Ventures colleagues

With a small team of researchers, we reviewed >23,000 abstracts to better understand the experimental landscape for non-criminal legal ... system interventions which reduce incarceration (a health-harming exposure) - either from ever happening, or from happening again

I joined @shanoorseervai on #TheDosePodcast for a conversation on how health systems must play their part in improving the health of ... communities affected by mass incarceration. Let me know what you think! Interview here:

#NoMorePolice is *officially* out in less than 2 weeks! ☺️ We hope you'll give it a read—@prisonculture and @dreanyc123 wrote this ... with organizers in mind and hope it will be useful in your work!

Have you gotten your ticket yet to join us on September 1st? You don't want to miss one of the few events this fall where both ... @prisonculture and @dreanyc123 will be in conversation about their book #NoMorePolice! Register today — space is limited.

Please join us on Tuesday, 8/23, at 4:30 p.m. 🗓️ for a #SocialMedicine Rounds discussion: "So You Want To Be an Ally? Lessons for ... Healthcare Workers From Bronx Community Activists" -- moderated by Dr. Stella Safo @ammahstarr.

RSVP here:

We know it happens but it is stunning and sad to read it in black and white (no pun intended). "Home Appraised With a Black Owner: ... $472,000. With a White Owner: $750,000."

LOVEEE lucienne to the realm and back literally the most admirable characters on the sandman from the start til the end

Meaningful changes in policing requires clear definitions of state and local authority. The Justice Collaboratory is pleased to offer this ... legislative guide for more effective policing oversight and administration. @mearest @PolicingProf

Download here:


Retweet to show Dr. Oz that there’s no place like home and send him back to New Jersey! #WizardOfLies

“The fact that Trump continued his disregard for our security — not to mention our 224-year history of peaceful transitions — is ... circumstantial evidence that should be considered cumulatively with the other evidence amassed by the select committee.” YES!!!

Check out the latest episode of CRT2 featuring SQ1 roundtable participants @MzDeHoskins & @Vivian_D_Nixon, where they discuss barriers ... to re-entry for the nearly 2 million individuals leaving women’s prisons and jails every year in the United States. 👇

"I’m a parent of high school kids. If there was evidence to show that #schoolpoliceofficers would make their school safer I would be all ... for it but at the end of the day there’s literally no evidence to show that police in schools make #schoolssafer" @marc4justice @ErinBurnett

Tune in to @WBEZreset now to hear from @NnekaTapia, Andy Potter of @One_VoiceUnited and @BeySimpson of @JustLeadersUSA discuss the vision ... for holistic safety in corrections. #DoIHaveTheRightToFeelSafe Listen live:

Op-Ed by my colleague @PatNolan4Justic on honest criminal justice reform. @tolmanbrett @malcolm_john @ACUFoundation @ACUFforJustice ...

My take on the Mar-a-Lago raid - @EdMeeseIII ... @DSafavianEsq @DougDeason @tolmanbrett @arthurrizer @BradenBoucek @FedSoc

“The effects of the lighting intervention persist over time. Critically, the intervention reduced crime without eventually leading to a ... larger number of arrests.”

In just a few minutes, I'll be joining @SparksAndHoney's culture briefing to discuss poverty and criminal justice policy. Join the ... discussion here:

Today I launched the public safety coalition to reduce violent crime. Our approach is comprehensive and works to adequately fund law ... enforcement. #publicsafetysolutions