We can keep our communities safe without resorting to mass incarceration, abusive policing strategies and the failed war on drugs. We know this from direct experience in New York City, where the incarceration rate has dropped by 32% since 2001 while major felony crimes have dropped by a similar rate. But with rampant abuses of stop and frisk, persistently high rates of arrests for minor drug offenses, and other civil rights violations, it’s clear we have a long way to go.
Brooklyn gets to decide this fall who should be our top prosecutor. Will you join us on August 14th for a Brooklyn District Attorney Candidates Forum, sponsored by VOCAL-NY and our allies in the Brooklyn Reform Coalition?
The District Attorney plays an enormous role in public safety and criminal justice reform. They can determine which types of arrests are prosecuted and prioritized, push for alternatives to incarceration and innovative strategies to reduce mass incarceration, and use their bully pulpit to advocate for legal reforms like decriminalizing the possession of small amounts of marijuana or banning the use of condoms as evidence for prostitution-related offenses.
Make sure Brooklyn’s top prosecutor is committed to protecting civil rights. Sign up for the Brooklyn District Attorney Candidates Forum on August 14th. Spread the word and let your friends know you’re going on Facebook here.
You’ll hear the two candidates vying to be Brooklyn’s District Attorney for the next four years debate issues like drug policy, alternatives to incarceration, the relationship between law enforcement and public health (including HIV and hepatitis C prevention), stop and frisk abuses, and other important civil rights issues.
Here are the details (also on our Facebook event page):
When: Wednesday, August 14 from 7:00pm – 8:30pm (doors open at 6:30pm – arrive early to get a good seat!)
Where: St. Francis College at 180 Remsen St. in Brooklyn
Getting there: Subway options – N, R to Court / 2, 3, 4, 5 to Borough Hall / A, C, F to Jay St-Metro Tech
• Charles “Joe” Hynes (Brooklyn’s current DA) - www.charlesjhynesforda.com
• Ken Thompson - www.kenthompson4da.com
Moderator: Harry Siegel, New York Daily News columnist and editorial writer. VOCAL-NY leaders will also join the moderator on stage to ask the candidates questions about core civil rights issues we work on.
If you have any questions, contact Alyssa at (917) 200-1446 or alyssa (at) vocal-ny.org.