06-23-2017  12:04 am      •     
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NEWS BRIEFS

Multnomah County Leaders Release Statement on Safety at Summer Events

Officials advise public to check in, have a plan and be aware at public events ...

Portland Musician, Educator Thara Memory Dies

Grammy-winning Trumpeter, composer, teacher died Saturday at the age of 68 ...

St. Johns Center for Opportunity to Host Meet the Employer Event June 27

Employers represented will include Mary’s Harvest and Del Monte ...

New Self-Defense Organization Offers Training to Youth in Multnomah County

EMERJ-SafeNow offers July classes for children ages 8-10 and youth ages 15-19 ...

Annual Humboldt Neighborhood Association Cleanup

All neighborhoods and residents welcome ...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

OPINION

Our Children Deserve High Quality Teachers

It’s critical that parents engage with educational leaders and demand equal access to high quality teachers ...

Civil Rights Groups Ask for Broad Access to Affordable Lending

Charlene Crowell writes that today’s public policy housing debate is also an opportunity to learn from the mistakes of the past and...

Criminal Justice Disparities Present Barriers to Re-entry

Congressional Black Caucus Member Rep. Danny Davis (D-Ill.) writes about the fight to reduce disparities in our criminal justice...

Bill Maher Betrayed Black Intellectuals

Armstrong Williams talks about the use of the n-word and the recent Bill Maher controversy ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

ENTERTAINMENT

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and Rep. Earl Blumenauer asked President Obama to review the cases of Oregonians serving mandatory minimum sentences for nonviolent offenses in federal prison.

Their letter urged the president to commute the sentences of those who are eligible when appropriate to a shortened sentence or time-served. 

“We write to express our deep concern for the many Oregonians who are currently serving mandatory minimum sentences for nonviolent offenses in federal prison that are disproportionate to the crimes that they committed,” the three Oregon lawmakers wrote. “In many cases, mandatory minimum sentences have imprisoned people for far longer than is just.”

Wyden, Merkley and Blumenauer noted that the cost of mandatory minimum sentences strips judges of their ability to analyze the facts of a case to devise appropriate sentences.

“This has resulted in hundreds of thousands of people serving sentences that are disproportionate to the crimes that they committed,” they wrote. “As more and more people are incarcerated under mandatory minimum sentences for nonviolent offenses, the enormous costs of over incarceration continue to take resources away from effective strategies such as crime prevention and prisoner reentry programs.”

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