Groups Start State Clemency Project to Aid Inmates

The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and Families Against Mandatory Minimums will launch their effort in New York State, where Gov. Andrew Cuomo has agreed to a partnership.

The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) and Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM), are starting a State Clemency Project to recruit, train, and provide resource support to pro bono attorneys who will help state prisoners to submit petitions to have their sentences commuted. The groups said that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has agreed to a partnership with the initiative. The project will provide logistical support for the governor by recruiting and training volunteer lawyers.

“We are committed to provide training and resource support to volunteer lawyers to facilitate a process through which applicants can have access to counsel who can expeditiously submit a petition that makes the case for a second chance,” said NACDL director Norman Reimer. “We want the executive authority to see clearly that many offenders have learned from past mistakes and are ready to safely and productively return home.” FAMM president Kevin Ring said people “who have worked hard to rehabilitate themselves and take responsibility for their mistakes deserve a chance to get out of the penalty box.” The sponsoring group said the project brings their collective experience as partners of the federal-level Clemency Project 2014 to state-level clemency efforts.

from https://thecrimereport.org