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Press Release Buying Groceries Should Not Result in Death 

Washington, DC – Following the killing of George Floyd and the arrest of one Minneapolis police officer, FCNL General Secretary Diane Randall issued the following statement:

Update We Need to Talk About Mental Health in Prisons 

Incarcerated people have the same needs and fears as the un-incarcerated. But incarceration institutions, by their very nature, deny the humanity of the people they house. This continual denial of humanity leads to psychological scarring that lasts long after a person is released.

Update How Does the Heroes Act Align with FCNL's Priorities? 

The House passed the Heroes Act (H.R. 6800), a comprehensive bill to further address the COVID-19 pandemic and economic fallout. FCNL has been lobbying Congress to include many policy provisions in the next COVID-19 bill.

Background Violent Offenses Fact Sheet 

Too often when Congress passes legislation, they exclude people with violent offenses. This does not work. These reforms leave out too many people, the cost of incarceration is too high, and it’s cruel given all the people we leave out of relief.

Update Prisons Are Deeply Unprepared for COVID-19 

The COVID-19 pandemic has drilled into us a standard set of precautionary measures: Wash your hands, maintain distance from other people, and avoid groups. But there is a population within our society that is unable to take the precautions that we take for granted: incarcerated people.

Background For-Profit Corporations Have No Place in the Justice System 

In its 2019 session, the California State Legislature banned the state from entering into contracts with for-profit prisons, including for immigrant detention. As a Quaker organization, FCNL applauds this initiative. Private business interests have no place in the justice system. For-profit corporations exacerbate the horrific effects of detention felt by millions of people and families.

Update Our Hopes and Fears for the 2020 State of the Union 

Between the escalation with Iran and the impeachment hearings, Congress has been abuzz with activity so far this year—and advocates have been hard at work, too. The president’s State of the Union address, set for Feb. 4, will serve as an important point of reflection for FCNL and all those working to create change in Congress.

Update Education Can Restore Hope for Incarcerated Individuals 

Updated Oct. 29, 2019

The 1994 crime bill, formally known as the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, reframed the U.S. attitude towards criminal justice. Instead of compassion and rehabilitation, the focus shifted towards being “tough on crime.” Through numerous cuts and changes, the 1994 crime bill extended this “toughness” to the treatment of our incarcerated population. One target of the bill was education: After 1994, incarcerated individuals could no longer access Pell Grants.

Update Speaking of Education Reform, What Can Congress Learn from Orange is the New Black? 

Recently, I joined Illinois Rep Danny Davis to talk about lifting the Pell Grant ban and giving people more access to education. Congress has introduced a bill - the bipartisan REAL Act (H.R.2168 /S.1074) - which would restore access to Pell Grants. But it is not moving as fast as planned and needs some helpful pressure for final passage.

Event Restore Pell Grants for Incarcerated Students: Briefing with Rep. Danny Davis and Jose Woss 

Listen to the Recording

This fall Congress has a chance do do something life-changing: restore access to Pell Grans for incarcerated students. On September 10, 2019, FCNL hosted a special briefing with Rep. Danny Davis (IL-07) and José Woss, FCNL’s legislative manager for criminal justice.

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