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LISTEN NOWThe Freedom Files Podcast Episode 38: Dr. Adrian MooreListen Here
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Op-ed Placement

Sarah Anderson: President Trump and the GOP commit to second chances

BY Sarah Anderson

The White House held an event last week to kick off April as Second Chance Month. Of course, this means asking our country to embrace the idea that we should look at those currently or formerly incarcerated who have made mistakes -- even grave ones -- and realize that we will all be better off to give these individuals a second chance at a productive life.

04/15/2019
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Blog

DOJ Offers a Mixed Bag Update on First Step Act Implementation

On Monday, the Department of Justice (DOJ) put out a release outlining its intentions for and the status of the implementation of the First Step Act. Signed into law on December 21, 2018, the First Step Act is a comprehensive overhaul of the federal prison system, run by the Bureau of Prisons. Certainly, it is encouraging to see the department taking affirmative steps toward implementing the law.

04/12/2019
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Op-ed Placement

DC Takes Steps Toward Addressing Criminal Records

BY Sarah Anderson

Chatter around criminal justice reform opportunities continues loudly following the successful bipartisan federal First Step Act. States and localities alike are taking hard looks at ways to build common sense policies that further reform efforts around the country. It’s a rare area where bipartisanship exists.

03/06/2019
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Blog

Criminal Records Still Plague Reentry for Rehabilitated Offenders

As Congress reflects on its success in passing the First Step Act at the end of 2018, it must look toward ways to build on the existing momentum. The First Step Act was constructed to shift our justice system toward ensuring that we are incarcerating the right people for the right amount of time and that while people are incarcerated, our correctional system is using resources wisely to rehabilitate inmates. It makes steps toward reentry initiatives following incarceration by reauthorizing the Second Chance Act but leaves much still to be done in the space of breaking down barriers to reentry to allow rehabilitated inmates to be successful in society.

02/22/2019
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Blog

Support the Fair Chance Act, H.R. 1076 and S. 387

On behalf of our activist community, I urge you to contact your senators and representative and ask them to support the Fair Chance Act, H.R. 1076 and S. 387. Introduced by Reps. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) and Doug Collins (R-Ga.) and Sens. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), this bipartisan legislation would aid prisoner reentry into society and lower crime rates, by delaying inquiries into criminal history for federal job and federally contracted applications until the conditional offer stage.

02/11/2019
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Blog

Florida Needs Its Own First Step on Justice Reform

Following the enactment of transformative federal criminal justice reform legislation, the First Step Act, Congress and states have the green light to continue -- or, in many cases, start -- down this path. By bringing the tough-on-crime mentality in alignment with smart-on-crime approaches, state and federal justice systems can enhance public safety and fairness by reducing crime while simultaneously reducing prison populations nationwide.

01/25/2019
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Key Vote

Key Vote Alert on the Cotton-Kennedy Amendment to the First Step Act

As noted on our key vote alert for the First Step Act, FreedomWorks reserved the right to score any related votes including amendments. Accordingly, we will be scoring on our 2018 Congressional Scorecard vote(s) on the Cotton-Kennedy amendment to the legislation, which includes three divisions of deceitfully crafted poison pills each intended to harm the legislation and upset the supermajority support for criminal justice reform in the Senate.

12/18/2018
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Key Vote

Key Vote YES on the First Step Act Amendment to S. 756

On behalf of our activist community, I urge you to contact your senators and urge them to vote YES on the First Step Act amendment to S. 756, sponsored by Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa). The First Step Act would reform the federal criminal justice system to make our communities safer by reducing crime and focusing limited resources on the most dangerous offenders.

12/14/2018
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Blog

The First Step Act is Anything but Flawed

The myths surrounding the First Step Act continue to emerge, most frequently from Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), the bill’s most outspoken critic. The First Step Act, S. 3649, which was carefully drafted by a bipartisan group of lawmakers in Congress, is supported by President Trump, over 150 former federal prosecutors, multiple law enforcement agencies, a wide base of faith leaders, and conservative policy groups both in Washington and across the country.

12/03/2018
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Issue Analysis

Separating Facts from Fiction on the First Step Act

Originally published on November 21, 2018. Last revised on December 3, 2018.

11/21/2018

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