Social & Criminal Justice Reform

Pennsylvania can be a wonderful place to work and live, to raise a family, to go to school, to start a business. We must ensure that those opportunities are available to all our residents, regardless of their gender, race, sexual orientation or creed.

This means preserving women’s rights, making sure their access to health care is protected, that they receive the same pay for the same work, and that they are free from sexual harassment in the workplace.

We need to protect the rights of our LGBT citizens as well. Right now, we have no statewide, nondiscrimination laws that prohibit discrimination in housing or employment based on sexual orientation or gender. Many of our neighboring states do, and it’s time we join them in making everyone feel comfortable and welcome in this commonwealth.

Criminal justice

Re-entering a community after serving time in prison can be difficult, and it’s one of the factors that leads to higher rates of recidivism.

We can:

Create programs to ease the re-entry process can be enormously helpful in getting a person back on their feet

Reform the expungement process, so that minor offenses can be wiped from a person’s record and they don’t spend the rest of their lives paying for a single mistake.

"Ban the Box,” a provision that prohibits employers from asking job applicants if they’ve ever been convicted of a crime in the first round of their screening process. Too often, checking “Yes” in that box will automatically disqualify an applicant.

Eliminate incarceration for someone who fails to pay their cash bail. Paying a cash bail is simply not possible for some people, and locking them up for failing to pay that is a policy that punishes them again for not having means.

Our Members at Work

Sextortion Legislation Passes Pennsylvania Senate

HARRISBURG, September 26, 2018 – The Pennsylvania Senate today approved a bill introduced by Sen. Judy Schwank (D-Berks) and Sen. Randy Vulakovich (R-Allegheny) to criminalize the coercion of sexual conduct. Senate Bill 1134, which Schwank and Vulakovich introduced...

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Senator Williams Applauds Signing of Clean Slate Legislation

Harrisburg - July 3, 2018 – Last week, Senator Anthony H. Williams (D-Philadelphia) joined Governor Tom Wolf, lawmakers, and advocates for the signing of House Bill 1419, also known as the Clean Slate bill. “There are too many people who have done their time and have...

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Leach’s Statement On Felony Murder Hearing

HARRISBURG  – June 4, 2018 – State Senator Daylin Leach (D-Montgomery/Delaware) today released the following statement at the conclusion of today’s Pennsylvania Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Senate Bill 293. “One of the foundational principles of justice is...

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