I've been a leader in police reform legislation, policies that transition people to civilian life, and creating equity in sentencing policies.
Our prisons are overcrowded because of historic policies that have sought to lock people up and throw away the key. I have focused on voting against legislation that furthers that mentality. Since being elected to the Assembly, I have voted for bills and often helped to get bills passed that begin to remove the innate bias in our sentencing policies. This includes:
- Removing sentence enhancements;
- Removing differences in penalties for crack and powder cocaine;
- Requiring law enforcement agencies to report ethnic and race for each stop made by peace officers;
- Eliminating cash bail;
- Improving implicit bias training for peace officers;
- Strengthening protections against unlawful asset forfeiture by requiring a conviction before law enforcement can take someone’s property;
- Limiting use of force by law enforcement to only when necessary; and
- Assuring a District Attorney, and not a grand jury, would charge an officer involved in a shooting of a civilian or using excessive force (unfortunately, this was struck down by the courts in 2017).
I have supported, and advocated, for policies that help individuals transition from incarceration to civilian life. This includes:
- Improving educational opportunities;
- Questioning jail spending;
- Removing economic barriers to retaining communication and relationship with family members and loved ones; and
- Prohibiting middle-of-the night releases and dumping.
Additionally I have authored bills that do the following:
- Improve the AMBER Alert system when a child is abducted;
- Establish a statewide policy to govern the release of footage recorded by an officer’s body worn camera;
- Protect victims of domestic violence by strengthening the restraining order process; and
- Require law enforcement agencies to maintain records regarding the reason and the circumstances surrounding a peace officer’s departure.
As your Assemblymember I will continue to fight for a fairer criminal justice system. I will continue to question policies that make it harder for individuals to get out, and stay out, of the prison system. I will continue to be a strong voice in support of policies that make it easier to discipline officers found guilty of inappropriate conduct, make every use-of-force incident subject to public disclosure, protect victims of crime, and fight against policies that will only serve to burden our already overcrowded prisons.
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