The Restorative Action Alliance filed today an amicus brief in a case, Ortiz v. Breslin, for which a petition has been filed requesting review by the U. S. Supreme Court. The focus of the petition is decisions made by the New York State Department of Corrections not to release registrants on their court mandated release dates but instead to continue to imprison registrants for up to two additional years because they cannot find housing due to the state’s residency restrictions.
“The brief filed today by the Restorative Action Alliance should serve as a wake up call to the nine justices of the U.S. Supreme Court,” stated ACSOL Executive Director Janice Bellucci. “The brief includes compelling stories of several registrants turned away from homeless shelters that were forced to spend many additional months in prison and the harm that resulted from those decisions.”
The Restorative Action Alliance brief was authored by attorney Jill Sanders of New York who is one of three leaders of the Restorative Action Alliance (RAAA). RAA is a non-profit organization that provides support to registrants and their families in three states — New York, Connecticut and New Jersey. ACSOL Executive Director Janice Bellucci joined the amicus brief in her capacity as an attorney admitted into the U.S. Supreme Court’s bar association.
According to the petition that has been submitted, there are at least 250 registrants currently being kept in prison because they cannot find or afford housing that is compliant with the state’s residency restrictions. The petition was filed by New York Legal Aid Society attorney Lawrence Hausman on April 22, 2021.