Yesterday, in commemoration of Second Chance Month, Domestic Policy Advisor Susan Rice, White House Public Engagement Director Cedric Richmond, and White House Counsel Dana Remus hosted a virtual discussion with formerly incarcerated individuals leading criminal justice reform efforts across the country.
Too many people—disproportionately Black and brown people—are incarcerated. Too many face an uphill struggle to secure a decent job, stable housing, and basic opportunity when they return from prison. Those who have been through the system have particular insight into its shortcomings and the reforms that are needed.
Ambassador Rice, Richmond, and Remus thanked the participants for their leadership and solicited their policy recommendations to reduce incarceration, end racial disparities, and facilitate successful reentry. They discussed actions the Administration has already taken, such as removing barriers to loan eligibility and promoting voting rights for formerly incarcerated individuals, as well as Administration efforts to improve public safety and reentry through the American Jobs Plan and the American Families Plan. Participants expressed a desire to stay in communication and collaborate to pursue urgently needed criminal justice reform.
Participants in yesterday’s meeting included:
- Daryl Atkinson, Forward Justice
- Susan Burton, A New Way of Life Reentry Project
- Dawn Harrington, Free Hearts
- Robyn Hasan, Women on the Rise
- Norris Henderson, Voice of the Experienced
- DeAnna Hoskins, JustLeadershipUSA
- Andrea James, National Council for Incarcerated and Formerly Incarcerated Women and Girls
- Desmond Meade, Florida Rights Restoration Coalition
- Vivian Nixon, College & Community Fellowship
- Brittany White, Live Free