Thursday, May 17, 2012

Take Action to STOP wasteful prison & jail construction!

From Californians United for a Responsible Budget (CURB):


Stop California
from Wasting Hundreds of Millions 
on New Prison & Jail Beds

We need you to take action today to stop new funding for prison and jail beds throughout the state.

This Monday, the Governor released his May Revise of the budget with a Corrections section that almost exactly matches the CDCR master plan released April 23rd.  For detail on the plans, check out our press release on the May Revise, and our one page response to the CDCR Future of California Corrections Plan.

In the May Revise the Governor slashes billions from healthcare, housing, education, parks, childcare, workers and all the social services our communities depend on while funding massive prison and jail expansion plans: in this case $500 million for expanded jails and $810 million for more prison beds.

We can’t all make it to Sacramento this week, but we can make our voices heard loud and clear. Budget hearings on Public Safety start today, so we must act immediately to influence these decisions.

Here are 3 ways we need you to get involved:

1.    Call and Email the Senate and Assembly Public Safety Subcommittee Members on the Budget

If you are a constituent, be sure to mention that first.  Each call should take less than a minute, but if you’ve only got time for a few, prioritize your representative(s), then the committee and budget chairs (in RED below).   Here’s what to say when you call:

Hi, My Name is ______________ and (I am a constituent of ______________ and) I am calling to urge Senator/Assemblyperson ______________ to say no to $500 million for jail construction and $810 million for new prison beds in the Governor’s Budget.  It is shameful that the CDCR continues to ask for more money to expand the prison system while we are drastically cutting funds for Health and Human Services and Education. I am asking the Senator/Assemblyperson to support budget policy that builds strong communities, not prisons and jails.  We need a prison and jail moratorium now. 

Lois Wolk San Joaquin and Sacramento Counties (916) 651-4005
Joel Anderson San Diego and Riverside Counties (916) 651-4036
Loni Hancock - Chair Alameda, Albany, Berkeley, Castro Valley, Dublin, El Sobrante, Emeryville, Livermore, Oakland, Piedmont, Richmond, and San Pablo. (916) 651-4009
Mark Leno - Chair of Sen Budget Marin and portions of San Francisco and Sonoma Counties. (916) 651-4003
Gilbert Cedillo - Chair Los Angeles, Alhambra, Maywood, San Marino, Vernon, and South Pasadena. (916) 319-2045
Luis A. Alejo San Benito County, the Salinas Valley, North Monterey County, South Santa Clara County and the city of Watsonville. (916) 319-2028
Mike Feuer Los Feliz to West Los Angeles, including Beverly Hills and West Hollywood, San Fernando Valley, Sherman Oaks to Universal City. (916) 319-2042
Diane L. Harkey Aliso Viejo, Dana Point , Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Oceanside, San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano (916) 319-2073
Mike Morrell Fontana, Grand Terrace, Highland, Loma Linda, Moreno Valley, Rancho Cucamonga, Redlands, Riverside, San Bernardino, Upland, Yucaipa (916) 319-2064
Bob Blumenfield - Chair of Assem Budget San Fernando Valley (916) 319-2040

To send an email click on the Legislators name above and you can also add:

·      The impacts that prisons, jails, and budget cuts have had on you and your community

·      Encouraging counties to expand jails when they could take simple, safe steps to reduce their jail populations is following 30 years of failed state policy.  Realignment was meant to reduce prison overcrowding by reducing the population, not by transferring the problem to the counties.  Funds should be sent to counties to fund community services, not build more cages.

·      Similarly, you could avoid $810 million of construction costs and the millions of dollars of debt and operating costs to come if you implement common sense reforms that have been successfully implemented in other states, such as geriatric and medical parole, restorative justice, compassionate release, and drug reform.  Why would we spend more than a billion dollars to build prison hospital beds for infirm and elderly people while we are cutting more than a billion dollars for health services in our communities?

·      California needs from our elected officials to implement commen sense parole and sentencing reform policies that will continue to lower the prison population and the CDCR budget.

2.    Spread the Word
Forward this email, share this link on your Facebook wall and your friend’s walls, and repost from our Twitter!
3.    Attend a Budget Hearing in Sacramento and Speak to These Issues

If you will be or can be in Sacramento in the next two weeks, come testify at the budget hearings. We can provide you with talking points and other support. Get in contact with Emily at

Senate Sub 5 Hearings on Corrections & Public Safety

Thursday, May 17th - 9:30am in Room 113

Tuesday, May 22nd - 1:30pm in Room 113

Stop the cages. Stop the Cuts. We need a Budget for Humanity.

In Solidarity,

Emily Harris, Statewide Coordinator for CURB

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is important. Many county sheriffs are maneuvering to create/expand their own fiefdoms using AB109 as the justification. Rehabilitative programs are not at the forefront of solutions, rather expansion of jails and related facilities. The mentality isn't changing, rather it is shifting from a state to county level. Sad.