The Criminal Justice Committee Report
The criminal justice system in Philadelphia is failing from fairness for black men to providing safety for community residents to consuming over one-third of the City’s $3-billion annual budget with few positive results. Changes required in all facets of Philadelphia’s criminal justice system can begin with policy/programmatic changes in the $249-million prison system. Savings from changes in prison policy/programs must be invested in initiatives for black men and communities citywide. Reinvest one-third of the projected budget for the local prison system in projects to reduce reliance on pre- and post-trial detention; to create neighborhood-based partnerships to establish economic opportunities for ex-offenders and to restore neighborhoods; and, to increase efficiency and fairness of the courts, the District Attorney’s Office, the behavioral health system and the City of Philadelphia’s police department. With judges being a critical component in all phases of the criminal justice system the creation of community review committee for candidates seeking election to the judiciary or judges seeking retention is essential.
In a word, Criminal Justice Reinvestment. Reinvest one-third of the projected budget for the local prison system in projects to reduce reliance on pre- and post-trial detention; to create neighborhood-based partnerships to establish economic opportunities for ex-offenders and to restore neighborhoods; and, to increase efficiency and fairness of the courts, the District Attorney’s Office the behavioral health system and the City of Philadelphia’s police department.
Recommendation No 1: Short Term
Action Step No. 1:
Establish a mechanism to educate the public concerning the rehabilitative nature of incarceration and related issues; the struggles and issues faced by the police department in fighting crime; and the function of the Criminal Justice Advisory Board.
Action Step No .2:
Establish a Community Juridical Review Committee - for the purpose of providing objective evaluations for individuals seeking Judicial positions or retention (Judges); the Committee would establish benchmarks and provide a review of the candidate’s positions as they resonate with the Agenda.
Recommendation No. 2: Medium Term
Action Step No. 1: Implement community-based roundtables to coordinate employment, treatment, and education for ex-offenders, complete with review protocols.
Recommendation No. 3: Long Term
Action Step No. 1:Institutionalize a system-wide analysis and planning function within city and country government to formulate accurate, long range and budgetary criminal justice goals, and monitor, measure and modify programs and strategies as needed.
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1. Stay Calm Don't Argue
2. Turn off the car and turn on internal lights
3. Open the window
4. Keep your hands where police can see them
5. Upon request show police driver's license, registration and proof of insurance.
6. Politely ask why you are being pulled over.
7. Dont't talk yourself into a ticket
8. Make no moves whil police are talking to you.
9. In certain cases your car can be searched withou warrant. To protect yoursel later, you should state that you do not consent to a search. It is not lawful for police to arrest you simply for refusing to consent to a search.
10. Don't bad mouth a police officer or run away, even if you believe what is happening is unreasonable. This tyoe of behaviour could lead to your arrest.