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Rep. Bass Holds Criminal Justice Forum and Prisoner Reentry Resource Fair

Congresswoman Karen Bass

Congresswoman Karen Bass (D-Calif.) hosted a criminal justice forum and prisoner reentry resource fair for Los Angeles residents on Saturday, June 8th 2013 at the Bethel A.M.E. Church located at 7900 S. Western Ave, Los Angeles California.

In Los Angeles County, there is a high demand for reentry services due to the large number of individuals returning home following passage of AB 109.  AB 109 has resulted in several non-violent offenders being released due to prison overcrowding.  Residents seeking services will have an opportunity to connect with several community organizations dedicated to assisting with reentry back into society.

The Congresswoman was joined by Virginia Congressman Robert “Bobby” Scott, who has led efforts in the Congress to pass comprehensive juvenile justice reform, including addressing the impacts mandatory minimums have on the African American community.

African Americans are disproportionately impacted by mandatory minimum drug laws, with higher percentages of blacks sentenced to prison despite the fact that nationwide rates of substance dependence and levels of drug dealing are virtually identical between African American and white populations.  African Americans make up 13 percent of the nation’s population but represent 37 percent of the prison population.

The Congresswoman, Representative Scott and community leaders will discuss these issues as well as a pathway forward for more comprehensive criminal justice reforms.

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