A letter to the editor of the Buffalo News by a former Parole bureau chief, Stephen Uminski.
“We have recently been subject to TV ads advocating reform of the New York State Parole System. The parole system is portrayed as a bloated and costly system which returns releases from New York prisons for trivial violations and denies them legal representation for these violations. Parolees are portrayed as being cited for “technical” violations, such as “missing appointments.”
After University at Buffalo Law School, I defended assigned parole violation cases and discovered that parole staff are now also calling rule violations technical violations. Although both begin with T, technical violations are not trivial in nature. “Missing an appointment” may or may not be a serious violation but failing to report as instructed can have serious implications for public safety.
Do you agree with Mr.Uminski re Crim Justice Reform?
Crim Justice Reform – Bail.
Bail is simply an amount of forfeitable money a suspect released from jail puts up to show a court s/he will not flee justice. Here’s a summary and video from the Vanguard:*
“When the California Supreme Court ruled in March, in the Humphrey decision, that the judges are required to consider a person’s ability to pay when setting their bail amounts, a big question was whether that would lead to more pretrial release or whether judges would simply detain more people without bail, citing a public safety concern.
In a new policy brief released in late May by the nonpartisan California Policy Lab, the early results show that when San Francisco was required to set more affordable bail amounts, judges in San Francisco chose to release more people to intensive supervision programs instead.
This new analysis provides a preview of what may happen in other counties after the California Supreme Court applied that decision to the rest of the state earlier this year.
Talking about this study and what it means is Dr. Johanna Lacoe, Research Director at the California Policy Lab, and a co-author of the analysis.”
Any reactions to these “bail” developments?
*Disclaimer: the views expressed by guest writers are strictly those of the author and may not reflect the views of the Vanguard, its editor, or its editorial board. The Vanguard is a community-based watchdog and news reporting organization that seeks to cover community debates and other events in a full and thorough manner. As our audience has grown, we seek to codify our goals and principles underlying our operations. Our goals are to provide transparency, accountability and fairness to local government, while promoting social justice and democracy, and adhering to principles of accuracy and fairness in our reportin
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