For a second time, speakers unanimously stated their opposition today to regulations issued by the CA Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) that categorically exclude registrants and those sentenced to life without parole from re-sentencing opportunities. Today’s hearing followed an initial hearing on May 7 during which technical difficulties that lasted for more than 20 minutes resulted in the inability of many people to speak about the regulations.
“ACSOL thanks the dozens of people who spoke in opposition to CDCR’s regulations,” stated ACSOL Executive Director Janice Bellucci. “CDCR is now fully informed by written responses as well as hearing testimony that the public opposes the agency’s re-sentencing regulations.”
In addition to individuals, representatives of several civil rights organizations including the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights of Oakland and the Returning Home Foundation of Laguna Beach spoke in opposition to the regulations during today’s hearing.
“CDCR’s regulations broadly exclude people based on criteria that have no relation to a person’s rehabilitation, current risk to public safety, or preparedness for release,” stated Elliot Hosman of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights. “CDCR’s categorical exclusion of individuals sentenced to life without parole or convicted of a sex offense have placed unjust and unfounded limits on the laws recently passed by the legislature. They also turn a range of sentences into death sentences due to the ongoing pandemic.”
During both hearings, CDCR was put on notice that the categorical exclusions in the agency’s re-sentencing regulations repeat the same mistake that agency made in its Proposition 57 regulations. Several speakers reminded CDCR that all court challenges to the Proposition 57 regulations were successful and ended with a unanimous decision by the CA Supreme Court declaring CDCR’s regulations must be repealed because they were unconstitutional. ACSOL stated in writing and during the first hearing that CDCR’s re-sentencing regulations would be challenged in court unless the categorical exclusions of registrants and those sentenced to life without parole were not removed. Additional speakers during the second hearing also warned CDCR that the current language in the re-sentencing regulations would be litigated.