The role of the criminal justice system is to prevent crime and promote public safety. Current research indicates successful systems focus on rehabilitation and support to prevent recidivism. However, some communities experience excessive force and surveillance by the police; other individuals waste away in prisons serving sentences far out of proportion to their offenses.
A growing national bipartisan consensus exists that the current criminal justice system needs reform to ensure its constitutionality and cost effectiveness. A League of Women Voters of California task force reviewed criminal justice positions from state and local Leagues across the country. Based on that research, they drafted this Criminal Justice position so that local Leagues can educate their communities on best practices that will ensure safety and justice for all, and so that LWVC can advocate for/against proposed criminal justice legislation at the state level.