Courts

Do judges deserve second chances?

(NOTE: Safe & Just Michigan is nonpartisan and doesn’t make political endorsements. Ronnie Waters, our community engagement specialist, is speaking about his own personal endorsement of Justice Richard Bernstein.) SJM Community Engagement Specialist Ronnie Waters (left) with Michigan Supreme Court Justice Richard Bernstein in the summer of 2022. When Michigan Supreme Court Justice [...]

2023-01-27T14:41:59-05:00January 27th, 2023|Categories: Blog, Courts, Reentry|

Meet Scott Tompkins, our new Fund Development Fellow

Growth is carried out over the course of an entire lifetime. This is a concept that resonates well with Scott Tompkins. Over his lifetime, he has been a father, a journalist, an educator, a community organizer — and someone sentenced to 18 months in prison. Now back home in northern Michigan, Scott wants to put all [...]

2022-10-11T15:15:41-04:00October 11th, 2022|Categories: Blog, Courts, Prison programs, Reentry|

From prosecuted to working for the prosecutor’s office: A story of continuing transformation

Former juvenile lifer Edward Sanders starts work for Washtenaw County's Conviction Integrity & Expungement Unit (Safe & Just Michigan first interviewed Edward Sanders, a former juvenile lifer, in July 2018, after he had been released from prison for about a year. Since then, he has contacted us periodically to keep us up-to-date on [...]

2021-07-09T01:47:55-04:00July 8th, 2021|Categories: Blog, Courts, Juveniles, Lifers, Racial equity, Reentry, Sentencing, Trauma|

Violated: A look a recent parole and probation reforms 

The Michigan Jail Task Force on Jail and Pre-Trial Incarceration made 18 recommendations that were turned into legislation. In the last weeks of 2020, the Michigan Legislature passed that legislation and changed the laws but more importantly it will change hundreds of thousands of Michiganders lives for the better. Some of this legislation focused on [...]

2021-01-28T15:25:17-05:00January 28th, 2021|Categories: Blog, Courts, Diversion, Jails, Parole, Reentry, Sentencing|

2020 in review: A year of extremes

This past year has been one of extremes. The COVID-19 pandemic has been tragic and caused enormous loss, as many people with loved ones inside prison know all too well. At the other extreme, it has also been a year of unprecedented gains in criminal justice reforms. In between, all of us at Safe & [...]