Mackinac Center Statement on the Recommendations of the Michigan Joint Task Force on Jail and Pretrial Incarceration
Recommendations are comprehensive and discerning
Tuesday, January 14, 2020|Font size:
Below is a statement by David Guenthner, senior strategist for state affairs at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, on the recommendations of the Michigan Joint Task Force on Jail and Pretrial Incarceration.
The task force recommendations follow a theme that has been key to the successful criminal justice reforms of the last decade and a half: we should lock up the people who we have reason to believe are a threat to public safety and develop alternative punishments for people who violated a law but are not a public safety risk.
When drivers’ licenses can be suspended for matters unrelated to traffic safety, more people wind up in jail. When every misdemeanor offense is eligible for arrest, more people wind up in jail. When law enforcement lacks proper training and local partnerships with behavioral health providers, more people wind up in jail. Jail is an essential resource to keep the public safe, but local taxpayers bear a heavy cost when it is used inappropriately or excessively.
The recommendations are comprehensive and discerning, and we stand ready to work with Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and our Michigan legislators to implement them.
The Mackinac Center for Public Policy is a nonprofit research and educational institute that advances the principles of free markets and limited government. Through our research and education programs, we challenge government overreach and advocate for a free-market approach to public policy that frees people to realize their potential and dreams.
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