The Tow Foundation Grant to Support LAC Criminal Justice Reform Advocacy in New York

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 23, 2015
MEDIA CONTACT: Sarah Nikolic, (212)-243-1313, [email protected]

The Tow Foundation Grant to Support LAC Criminal Justice Reform Advocacy in New York

Grant will Support Efforts to Expand Alternatives to Incarceration and Reentry Programs and Eliminate Criminal Record Barriers in New York State

New York, NY – The Legal Action Center has received a $35,000 grant from The Tow Foundation that will improve tens of thousands of lives in New York State by expanding alternatives to incarceration and eliminating obstacles to reentry for people returning to their communities from prisons and jails. Specifically, The Tow Foundation will support LAC’s work to:

1. Expand alternative to incarceration (ATI) and reentry program to divert more people from prosecution or incarceration and facilitate successful reentry from the criminal justice system back to the community, and
2. Ease reentry restrictions on people with arrest and conviction records.

Paul Samuels, President and Director of Legal Action Center, expressed his gratitude for The Tow Foundation’s support:

“The Tow Foundation grant will support our work to keep people who will do better under community supervision out of prison and jail cells and support people in reentering the community after justice involvement,” said Samuels. “More and better treatment so that people can get well, reduced incarceration, a greater emphasis on preparing people for reentry into the community, and getting rid of harmful criminal record barriers. All these must all be parts of a 21st century strategy to improve the health and safety of families and communities and give people a chance to rebuild their lives after contact with the criminal justice system.”

LAC Director of State Policy Sebastian Solomon is grateful to have a new ally in The Tow Foundation.

“We are thankful to The Tow Foundation for their support. The Legal Action Center is excited to start a relationship with such a respected partner based on our mutual mission to transform the criminal justice system into one that is more just and effective.”

For over forty years, Legal Action Center has advocated in New York, Washington, D.C., and nationally for drug policies that emphasize health over punishment and criminal justice policies that prepare people for successful reentry. “From reform of the notoriously harsh Rockefeller Drug Laws to participation on Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Council on Community Reentry and Re-Integration, you can count on Legal Action Center to be on the front-line of New York efforts to enact smarter, safer policies that make communities healthier,” said Samuels. “That’s why we are so grateful to The Tow Foundation for support that will enable us to continue this critical work.”

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About the Legal Action Center: The Legal Action Center is the only non-profit law and policy organization in the United States whose sole mission is to fight discrimination against people with histories of addiction, HIV/AIDS, or criminal records, and to advocate for sound public policies in these areas.

For four decades, LAC has worked to combat the stigma and prejudice that keep these individuals out of the mainstream of society. The Legal Action Center is committed to helping people reclaim their lives, maintain their dignity, and participate fully in society as productive, responsible citizens.

About The Tow Foundation: The Tow Foundation, established in 1988 by Leonard and Claire Tow, funds projects that offer transformative experiences to individuals and create collaborative ventures in fields where they see opportunities for breakthroughs, reform, and benefits for underserved populations. Investments focus on the support of innovative programs and system reform in the areas of juvenile and criminal justice, groundbreaking medical research, higher education, and cultural institutions.

For more information, visit www.towfoundation.org.

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