Criminal Justice Reform

We must move swiftly away from the failed tough on crime mindset that seeks to lock people up to remedy criminal activity. Mass incarceration and the war on drugs must end. While we don’t have private prisons in Massachusetts, too many services are being subcontracted out to private entities.

Rep. Connolly believes in ending cash bail and supports independent investigations each time an individual is killed by law enforcement, ending the extensive practice of mandatory-minimum sentencing and decriminalizing student misconduct.

We must also fully fund the offices of public defenders, decriminalize poverty, eliminate excessive fees that disproportionately burden low-income individuals, end arbitration clauses that shield corporate abuses of everyday Americans, end solitary confinement, and further raise the felony-larceny threshold.

And in everything we do, we must affirm Black Lives Matter.

Rep. Connolly is proud to work with statewide organizations Jobs not Jails, Prisoner's Legal Services, the ACLU of Massachusetts, and the Criminal Justice Policy Coalition.

In his first term, Rep. Connolly has proudly:

  • Voted to enact S.2371 - An Act relative to criminal justice reform pertaining to juveniles, diversion, bail reform, mandatory minimums, CORI, expungement, felony thresholds, and sexual assault tracking among other provisions
  • Co-sponsored H.2359 - An Act to reduce the criminalization of poverty eliminating fines and fees that disproportionately burden low income people in the criminal justice system
  • Co-sponsored H.2248 - An Act promoting humane conditions of confinement and enable safe reentry reforming solitary confinement and banning its use on vulnerable populations
  • Co-sponsored H.3034 - An Act limiting the use of prison labor ensuring no inmate would be transported out of state to build, for example, a border wall
  • Co-sponsored  H.793 - An Act promoting restorative justice practices allowing certain criminal cases be referred to a community restorative justice program in lieu of traditional responses

Where Rep. Connolly is talking about this: