Arlington, VA – Today, Generation Opportunity will submit testimony to the New Hampshire House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee in support of SB 556-FN, a bill that would positively reform the state’s bail and annulment procedures. This measure would protect the rights of the accused and allow citizens who are found innocent to petition to have the arrest annulled from their records.
Generation Opportunity (GO) is urging New Hampshire lawmakers to advance this legislation because the state’s current bail system is rigged against lower-income citizens and can destroy the lives of people who are making an honest effort to follow the law. Additionally, individuals shouldn’t struggle to find work as a result of arrests for which they are found innocent.
GO Policy Director David Barnes issued the following statement:
“New Hampshire’s legislators must seize the opportunity to pass SB 556-FN to ensure we aren’t incarcerating citizens based on their inability to meet bail requirements. A jail sentence should stem from an individual’s criminality, not their level of income. SB 556-FN would guarantee a citizen who is found innocent after being charged with a crime has the opportunity to annul their record and not have future job opportunities hindered. We applaud Chairman David Welch and the members of the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee for giving this critical issue attention and we stand in support of their effort to advance this measure.”
If you are interested in learning more or speaking with David Barnes about this issue, please contact: JFellinger@genopp.org.
GO believes that sending an individual to jail should be a function of their criminality, not their income level. The group supports comprehensive reform to U.S. criminal justice policies. Excessive laws and harsh sentencing disproportionately impact young Americans.
Nine out of ten defendants who remain in jail before trial are there because they haven’t posted a bond. Low-income people may not be able to come up with even the small amount needed.
Millennials make up nearly 40 percent of the federal inmate population and half of state prison populations.
Due to an excess of laws and harsh penalties, the United States has a higher incarceration rate than any other nation in the world. Since 1980, the federal prison population has grown by nearly 800 percent.
Generation Opportunity is a national, nonpartisan movement for more freedom, better opportunities, and a brighter future for all young Americans.