Middle Ground Prison Reform

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Jan 26, 2023

Bill addresses release of terminally ill inmates

The Board of Executive Clemency would no longer have to seek out a governor’s signature to grant release to inmates with terminal illnesses and would generally expand the power of the board to grant medical release under a proposed bill.  

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Jan 5, 2023

Clemency advocates push for more attention, resources, additional board member

When it comes to recommendations from the Board of Executive Clemency, advocates for clemency say former Gov. Doug Ducey fell short in responding to requests for pardons and commutations. 

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Jul 12, 2022

Court upholds Arizona prisons’ ban on explicit materials for inmates

A federal appeals court Friday upheld the Arizona prison system’s ban on sexually explicit material for inmates, rejecting claims by a censored prison magazine publisher that the policy violates the First Amendment.

Jul 16, 2021

Blackman prisoner release bill fails – again

There were plenty of issues taken up during the 171-day legislative session that ended June 30 that everyone knew would be contentious, even in January.

Mar 12, 2021

Prison oversight bill laudable, poorly executed

Does the corrections department require more accountability to taxpayers, more transparency and more professionalism? Yes; no question. Therefore, HB2167 is a laudable idea whose goals are poorly executed in the bill. It should go back to the drawing board.

Mar 12, 2021

Report lists economic benefits of early prison release

A report detailing economic benefits of proposed expanded earned release credits gives a look into a possible new middle ground in the debate on revamping Arizona’s prison system.

Apr 30, 2020

State prisons have potential for nearly 100% infection rate

The Arizona Public Health Association is urging the state’s health director to do more to prevent the spread of coronavirus in the prisons as studies and public health officials predict a nearly 100% infection rate.

Feb 21, 2020

Players in movement to remake Arizona’s criminal justice system

Since conservatives got on board with revamping Arizona’s sentencing laws, bills to do that no longer lay unheard, not considered. And as the movement has taken hold over the past few years, a host of groups and people have made their presence known at the Legislature. Following are some of them.

May 21, 2019

Broken locks whistleblower claims retaliation

When Arizona Correctional Sergeant Gabriela Contreras first downloaded videos of inmates leaving their cells due to broken locks, the whistleblower lost a weeks worth of pay and a potential promotion.

Apr 30, 2019

Prison guards and inmates unite in plea for better security

The union representing Arizona prison guards joined an inmate rights group Tuesday to demand that the state immediately fix security problems that they say led to an inmate's death and the severe beating of two guards.

Mar 12, 2019

Changes to criminal code must be intelligent, informed and incremental

Sentencing reform is complex and multi-layered. It must include all stakeholders in the process. Not everyone will get what they want. Not all wrongs will be righted.

Jan 18, 2019

Court: Tucson man wrongly jailed cannot collect for years behind bars

A Tucson man who spent 42 years in prison on 28 arson-related murder counts that were later vacated cannot now collect damages for the years he spent behind bars, a federal appeals court ruled Thursday.