Major Steps in Criminal Justice Reform

Hosted by: 
Produced by: 
Air date: 
Mon, 10/23/2017 - 6:30pm to 7:00pm
Oregon State Senator Lew Frederick
More Images: 
Oregon State Senator Lew Frederick
Oregon State Senator Lew Frederick
A Conversation with State Senator Lew Frederick

A felony conviction for small personal-use amounts of a drug can wreak havoc on a person's life forever and make it incredibly difficult if not impossible for that person to rehabilitate and re-integrate into society. In the most recent Oregon legislative session, criminal justice reform advocates and law enforcement officials teamed up to pass House Bill 2355, a measure which makes first-offense minor personal use possession a misdemeanor instead of a felony, and gives people convicted of such offenses probation rather than imprisonment.

House Bill 2355 also addresses racial profiling and racially biased law enforcement, both by mandating data collection and analysis and by mandating training of law enforcement officers. The measure was introduced as part of Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum's legislative package, following on the work of the task force on racial profiling that was set up by the legislature and chaired by AG Rosenblum.

One of HB2355's supporters was State Senator Lew Frederick, a Portland Democrat who has been a leader in criminal justice reform in Oregon. On this edition of Prison Pipeline, host Doug McVay speaks with Senator Frederick about de-felonization, racial profiling, and how we can give young people hope for a better future.

Download audio file

Audio by Topic: