We continue our examination of criminal justice in the Bay Area, this time with a discussion of the federal crime bill, The First Step Act, which was signed by President Trump in December.
The first "prisoner release" as a consequence of The First Step Act occurred this past Friday. Championing the bill was the Oakland-based organization #Cut50, whose goal is to reduce the United States' prison population by 50%.
Is the bill a win for criminal justice reform or a relatively minor gesture? Why hasn't the bill gotten more support from other reformers? How has #Cut50 cultivated the support of President Trump, Kim Kardashian, and the political right, and what are they hoping to achieve next with this high-profile support?
Producer: Wendy Holcombe
Erin Haney, National Policy Director of #Cut50; former Deputy Public Defender in San Francisco.
Tony Platt, Distinguished Affiliated Scholar at U.C. Berkeley's Center for the Study of Law & Society, and author of Beyond These Walls: Rethinking Crime and Punishment in the United States (St. Martin's Press, January 2019).