Criminal Justice Reform
A.J. believes we should stop criminalizing poverty, end civil asset forfeiture, end cash bail, end the use of private prisons, and stop the revolving door on probation.
Kansas should move to legalize marijuana and expunge the records of nonviolent drug offenders. Drug policy for other substances should revolve around treatment, not criminalization and incarceration.
A.J. believes in the restorative justice model. Crime causes harm and justice requires repairing that harm. The best way to figure out how to do that is through a cooperative process that allows victims, offenders, and community members to meet and talk about how to make amends. If this is not possible, other approaches would be available, but restorative justice has proven to be effective and transformational when communities have implemented it.
Even as we reform the criminal justice system, we should also work to reform the institutions that help us prevent and solve crimes. Law enforcement officers already have a difficult job in the best of circumstances. Instead of supporting our vital first responders, we’re asking them to deal with problems better addressed by healthcare professionals and social workers. This must end.
A.J. believes we should make sure police reflect the communities they serve. He also believes police should regularly use community feedback to inform police department policies and practices.
A.J. believes that any institution granted the power we grant police requires accountability. That’s why he supports effective civilian oversight of police.
We should be investing in crime prevention by better funding education and making sure every Kansan has a good-paying job. We should invest in our communities, which in turn will reduce the need for policing in the first place.