The Pennsylvania probation system is undergoing reconstruction which could lead to less probation violations. Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro signed two bills Thursday December 14th that drastically helps current persons on probation..
The new probation law aims to limit the length of probation and prevent people from being sent back to jail for minor violations. Pennsylvania has one of the highest rates of residents who are incarcerated or under supervision.
Meek Mill, co-chair for the REFORM Alliance, was a huge catalyst pushing for this bill to be passed. REFORM Alliance has fought to change what they call the “supervision-to-prison” pipeline. Meek Mill, like many others, has feel victim to the Pennsylvania probation system as he was jailed several times for minor violations in his probation.
Meek Mill joined Governor Shapiro for a press conference to celebrate the passing of the probation reform bill. He talked about how his probation kept him doing the simple things in life, and taking care of primary responsibilities as a parent.
“Every time I [crossed] the Ben Franklin to go pick my mom up to take my son to school in New Jersey, I was actually committing a crime the whole time from technical violations,” he said.
“I didn’t ask for this position. I don’t want to do it. It’s not for clout. It’s something that I stand for. It’s something that I live for, and I appreciate y’all for helping me.”
The reform requires mandatory probation review conferences after two years or 50% of a probation sentence, whichever is shorter. This legislation also clarifies for judges that minor technical violations of a probation sentence should not cause someone to be sent back to jail.
Minor technical vioaltions include, but not limited to:
- Showing up late for an appointment
- Returning home after curfew
- Visiting family out of state
Shapiro said the legislation is designed to be “more fair for all Pennsylvanians.”
“We all learned from Meek’s case because it shined a light on the injustices in our probation system,” Shapiro said. “How someone could be sentenced to prison for years for not committing a crime, but for just a technical violation of a long probation.”
So far, nine other states have adopted similar legislation.
Meek Mill Celebrates Signing of Pennsylvania Probation Reform and Clean Slate Legislation was originally published on wrnbhd2.com
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