ACLU of Nebraska urges reform over new prison
“This is a moment for principled leadership. Nebraskans want our lawmakers to invest in people, not prisons.”
LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – The ACLU of Nebraska urges senators to consider reforming the criminal justice system rather than building a new prison.
On Friday, the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services Director Scott Frakes revealed three different potential sites in Dodge, Douglas and Lancaster County for a new prison.
State senators are considering whether or not to approve the construction of a $230 million prison. Senators could also adopt new criminal legal reform measures which would look to improve the state’s criminal justice system.
“Senators have a clear choice before them: they can either use proven bipartisan strategies that support our communities and public safety or they can throw money at more iron and concrete,” said Danielle Conrad, ACLU of Nebraska Executive Director. “This is a moment for principled leadership. Nebraskans want our lawmakers to invest in people, not prisons.”
ACLU published “Nebraska’s Statehouse-to-Prison Pipeline,” which reviews the last five years of legislative activity on the prison system. The review includes recommendations for action including sentencing reform, investments in diversion and reentry programs, innovations to probation and parole and continued bond reform.
The ACLU says a “smart justice approach” would reduce the number of people imprisoned, address racial disparities and advance public safety.
According to the ACLU, the new prison proposal originally began as a new prison existing along with other facilities, then turned into a replacement for the Nebraska State Penitentiary.