New York Law School

Symposium: Ripples of Injustice

The Impact of Criminal Justice Policies on Minority Communities

Overview | Program | CLE | Flyer

A Justice Action Center Symposium. Friday, April 27, 2012, at New York Law School.

This spring the Justice Action Center’s Racial Justice Project and the Racial Justice Project of the American Civil Liberties Union co-sponsored a one-day conference in New York City for advocates, organizers, litigators, researchers, and individuals to explore the impact of criminal justice policies and practices on minority communities.

There has been increasing attention within the legal community on the impact of criminal justice policies—particularly harsh sentencing laws and long-term collateral consequences—on individuals who are convicted and sent to prison. But these laws do not just affect the lives of the individuals who are convicted; they have a broader social and economic impact on the people who remain in the communities that are disproportionately targeted by so-called “tough-on-crime” policies. And, given this nation’s disproportionate incarceration of racial and ethnic minorities, those communities are most heavily impacted.

This conference explored the long-term impact of criminal justice policies on the home communities, with a focus on: (1) employment and economic impact; (2) civic engagement and political power; (3) families and children; and (4) policing and public safety. In addition to four plenary sessions, the conference featured a keynote address from Professor Paul Butler and meaningful opportunities to share ideas and strategize together.

Click here to watch video of the day’s proceedings.