12-18-2017  6:39 am      •     
MLK Breakfast
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NEWS BRIEFS

Exhibit Explores the Legacy of Portland Bird Watchers

Dedicated bird watchers catapult a conservationist movement ...

Special Call for Stories about the Spanish Flu

Genealogical Forum of Oregon seeks stories from the public about one of history's most lethal outbreaks ...

Joint Office of Homeless Services Announces Severe Weather Strategy

Those seeking shelter should call 211 or visit 211.org. Neighbors needed to volunteer, donate cold-weather apparel ...

Q&A with Facebook's Global Director of Diversity Maxine Williams

A conversation on diversity and the tech industry ...

City Announces Laura John as Tribal Liason

Laura John brings an extensive background in tribal advocacy and community engagement to the city of Portland ...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

OPINION

Don’t Delay, Sign-up for Affordable Healthcare Today

The deadline to enroll or modify healthcare coverage under the Affordable Care Act is December 15. ...

The Skanner Editorial: Alabama Voters Must Reject Moore

Allegations of predatory behavior are troubling – and so is his resume ...

Payday Lenders Continue Attack on Consumer Protections

Charlene Crowell of the Center for Responsible Lending writes that two bills that favor predatory lenders has received bipartisan...

Hundreds Rallied for Meek Mill, but What About the Rest?

Lynette Monroe, a guest columnist for the NNPA Newswire, talks about Meek Mill, the shady judge that locked him up and mass...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

ENTERTAINMENT

U.S. Congress

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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