Category Archives: Local and State News & Reports

A Truce in the War on Drugs? Part II

by Mary C. Piemonte

Gary Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson speaking at a symposium on the War on Drugs at Northwestern Law School in mid-February 2014. Photo by Mary C. Piemonte.

Gary Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson speaking at a symposium on the War on Drugs at Northwestern Law School in mid-February 2014. Photo by Mary C. Piemonte.

Editor’s Note: The article below was produced as part of the Social Justice News Nexus, a program launched this year by Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications with a two-year grant from the McCormick Foundation.

 

Will Drug Courts Ease Prison Overcrowding?
Drug courts are becoming an increasingly popular topic of conversation among elected officials as they scramble to find solutions to punitive sentences for those charged with low-level drug-related crimes.

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A Truce in the War on Drugs? Part I

by Mary C. Piemonte

U.S. Se. Dick Durbin from Illinois speaks at a recent conference on reforming the War on Drugs. Photo by Mary C. Piemonte.

U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin from Illinois speaks at a recent conference on reforming the War on Drugs. Photo by Mary C. Piemonte.

Editor’s Note: The article below was produced as part of the Social Justice News Nexus, a program launched this year by Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications with a two-year grant from the McCormick Foundation.

Now that American prisons are swollen to capacity with thousands of non-violent, low-level drug offenders, public officials – like powerhouse U.S. Senator Richard Durbin (D-IL), the majority whip, and even some judges – are shifting their attitudes about the War on Drugs.

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Officials Launch Human Trafficking Awareness Campaign

by Mary C. Piemonte

Pictured from Left to Right: State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez, DCFS HT Program Manager Stacy Sloan, DCFS Acting Director Bobbie Gregg, FBI Special Agent Ricardo Pagan, Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart. Photo courtesy of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services.

Pictured from left to right: Illinois State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez, DCFS HT Program Manager Stacy Sloan, DCFS Acting Director Bobbie Gregg, FBI Special Agent Ricardo Pagan and Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart. Photo courtesy of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services.

The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office and the Cook County Sheriff’s Office recently launched an “Our Children Are Not for Sale” awareness campaign asking the public to alert law enforcement and DCFS when they believe a child is a victim of human trafficking.

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Violence and Criminal Justice Forum

by Mary C. Piemonte

Raw footage of legal, mental health and prison experts talking to professional and student journalists about how the courts, detention, prison and probation systems impact individuals and communities snared by violence during the Violence and Criminal Justice “speed dating” event, co-hosted by Community Media Workshop and Strengthening Chicago’s Youth Lurie Children’s Hospital program, at Columbia College on April 17, 2014.

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