Oct 11, 2011

Budget Cuts Eliminate Parole and Probation Courts in California

Despite what one official called a "torturous" decision in an interview with the New York Times, San Francisco's Parole Re-entry Court, which assists formerly incarcerated individuals stay out of prison and boasts a 88 percent success rate, and San Francisco's Probation Alternatives Court, which offers offenders rehabilitative services instead of incarceration and has kept 100% of its participants out of jail/prison, have been closed.  

These closures, results of budget cuts, "came just days before Gov. Jerry Brown’s realignment of California’s criminal justice system took effect, on Oct. 1. The law transferred responsibility for thousands of convicts and parolees from the state system to county jurisdictions."

The closings of these programs have been met with confusion and anger by many who know that the transfer and release of thousands of incarcerated individuals into the counties will demand effective community-based responses. 

“One of the priorities of realignment is safe and effective re-entry back into the community,” said Jeff Adachi, the San Francisco public defender and a mayoral candidate. He called the closings a “huge mistake” at a “time when they are needed most.”

To read the Times article, describing these closures, click here