Tell Governors: Embrace Clemency as a Pathway to Redemption
The United States incarcerates more people than any other nation in the world. And of the 2.3 million people in America's prisons, 1.3 million are in state prisons.
The errors of the past – 'tough-on-crime' policies such as the War on Drugs and mandatory minimum sentencing – mean that too many people are serving sentences that would be unthinkable today. Racial disparities are glaring: Black and Latinx people make up 57% of the state prison populations despite comprising just 29% of the overall population. And states are spending $43 billion on their prisons every year, perpetuating the crisis of mass incarceration and wasting money that should be invested instead into impacted communities.
Solving this problem is a moral, racial justice, and economic imperative and governors have a leading role to play. In nearly every state, governors have the power to immediately commute people's sentences and liberate them, offering them and their families a meaningful opportunity at hope, healing, and redemption. Governors can decarcerate without waiting for legislation to be passed.
That's why the ACLU is fighting for the liberation of 50,000 people from state prisons in the next five years by pushing governors to use their existing clemency powers in new and transformational ways.
Join us by urging governors to grant clemency for the tens of thousands of people in state prisons whose sentences are unjustifiable and whose path to redemption cannot be delayed a moment longer. Sign our petition today to tell your governor:
1. I support clemency for all people who are still incarcerated on a sentence that's no longer legal or possible today
2. I support clemency for all people imprisoned because of the War on Drugs
3. I support clemency for all people who are in prison for violations, or alleged violations, of probation or parole
4. I support clemency for all older incarcerated people, especially as the number of older people in prison is growing