- Washington, DC - A coalition of over 600 religious leaders
in the United States last week asked President Bill Clinton to commute
the sentences of non-violent federal drug offenders in the final weeks
of his term.
- The coalition has set up a website www.cjpf.org/clemency
for religious leaders to sign their letter to the president.
- The letter reads, "As faith leaders who cherish
Divine justice and mercy for all persons, we ask you to grant clemency
to and to release on supervised parole those Federal prisoners who have
served at least five years for low-level, nonviolent involvement in drug
cases (as defined by the U.S. Department of Justice). Mr. President, scores
of Americans are serving unconscionably long sentences for drug offenses
-- in some cases twenty years or more -- which are grossly out of proportion
to the nature and severity of their crimes. These unduly severe sentences
violate human rights and waste scarce criminal justice resources. The continued
incarceration of such offenders does not serve any meaningful purpose."
- As part of Christian and Jewish faiths, every 50th year
is a Jubilee year, in which debts are forgiven and prisoners are liberated.
This year is a Jubilee year for Christians.
- "For years, the ONDCP's General Barry McCaffrey,
along with his predecessors, have always encouraged citizens to seek out
religious leaders to help heal America's difficult relationship with drug
abuse," said Allen St. Pierre, NORML Foundation Executive Director.
"Citizens, in fact, have sought out religious leaders and many of
them support the Coalition for Jubilee Clemency and its basic call for
education and treatment, rather than the criminal justice system to reach
- For more information, please contact Allen St. Pierre,
NORML Foundation Executive Director at (202) 483-8751 or the Coalition
for Jubilee Clemency at (202) 312-2015 or visit their website at www.cjpf.org/clemency/.
Site Served by TheHostPros