December 18, 2018

Young Votes to Advance Criminal Justice Reform Legislation

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Todd Young (R-Ind.) voted today for Senate passage of the First Step Act (S.3649), bipartisan criminal justice reform legislation that would reduce federal recidivism and crime, prepare inmates for successful return to society, enhance prison security and officer safety, and reform federal criminal sentencing. Senator Young is a cosponsor of the measure, which passed on an 87-12 vote. The bill will now be considered in the House of Representatives.

“I was proud to cast my vote for this historic legislation that will make needed changes to our criminal justice system,” said Senator Young. “I urge my colleagues in the House to swiftly pass this bill that will enhance prison security and officer safety, reform criminal sentencing, and help non-violent inmates turn their lives around.”

Earlier this month Senator Young announced he would cosponsor the First Step Act. The following Indiana groups support this legislation:

Indiana State Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) President William R. Owensby: “The Indiana State Fraternal Order of Police would like to thank Senator Young for signing on to the First Step Act. The National Fraternal Order of Police worked closely with the Trump Administration to draft legislation that would enable offenders who pose little risk of recidivism to be able to get the tools they need to productively rejoin society when they leave the criminal justice system. The FOP played a key role in making sure that dangerous offenders will remain where they belong-behind bars. “

American Bail Coalition and Private Sector Criminal Justice Task Force Chair for ALEC, William Carmichael: “Currently, more than two million Americans are in state and federal prisons, and roughly 96 percent will be released. The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) model ‘Resolution in Support of Reentry Programs’ outlines the crucial role that reentry programs play in reducing crime rates by reducing recidivism rates. As a Hoosier, an Indiana based business owner and the Private Sector Criminal Justice Task Force Chair for ALEC, I commend the Senator for recognizing the need for this substantive legislation. This bill will make our communities safer by encouraging greater utilization of prisoner reentry programs, while making our criminal justice system fairer.”

Americans for Prosperity Indiana State Director, Justin Stevens: “We thank Senator Young for showing great leadership by co-sponsoring the First Step Act, which will reduce crime and break down barriers to opportunity for folks who want a second chance. Helping incarcerated people transition to life after prison will lower recidivism, save taxpayer money, prepare folks to tackle future challenges, and lead to safer and stronger Indiana communities. By co-sponsoring this bill, Sen. Young is standing up for Hoosiers who enthusiastically want their state to be a place where people get a real second chance after they pay their debt to society.”

Indiana Catholic Conference Executive Director, Glenn Tebbe: “A reformed criminal justice system that provides the tools for atonement and rehabilitation is essential for helping prisoners contribute back to their communities upon release. The newly revised bill will improve the lives of thousands of people who have been impacted by unfair sentencing laws. Senator Young understands the importance of the First Step Act and the difference it can make towards fixing our nation’s broken justice system. We are very grateful for his leadership and support.”

Chabad of Indiana Director, Rabbi Avrohom Grossbaum: “I applaud Senator Todd Young for supporting and cosponsoring the First Step Act. I strongly support the First Step Act and believe its immediate passage is critical. The First Step Act is a common-sense bill about redemption and the imperative for a human being to be productive in this world. It will not only save lives, but will also better society. The bill’s strategies have proven to work in many states to reduce recidivism and crime, such as Indiana, and it is high time the Federal prison system catches up.”

The First Step Act is also supported by the International Association of Chiefs of Police, National Fraternal Order of Police, Law Enforcement Leaders to Reduce Crime & Incarceration, National District Attorneys Association, National Governors Association, National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives, Americans for Tax Reform, American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), American Conservative Union, American Correctional Association, Freedom Works, Heritage Action, James Madison Institute, R Street Institute, Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, and many others.