Legislative Action Committee

The Legislative Action Committee works to ensure that all citizens are able to understand and participate in the policy-making process at local and state levels in Delaware. This committee is committed to:

  • Creating public transparency around legislative processes and decisions at local and state levels in Delaware
  • Providing opportunities for everyday Delawareans to participate in the creation of and/or advocacy for or against policy changes in Delaware.
  • Advocating for or against criminal justice-, education-, and economic-related legislation that can positively or negatively impact the lives of Black, brown, and impoverished peoples.

What are we working on?

The Legislative Committee has committed to supporting the Coalition for Smart Justice (CSJ).

The Legislative Committee has commited to supporting the Coalition for Smart Justice (CSJ). CSJ is comprised of two dozen community-based organizations who have identified six priorities for 2019 legislative session:

  • Revise drug statutes to remove location-based enhancements for all drug crimes, change the quantity tiering structure to make it less arbitrary so it reflects actual use patterns, remove mandatory minimums, and remove drug offenses from the violent felony list (a classification that all but guarantees a longer sentence regardless of whether any force was actually used in commission of the crime).
  • Amend the sentencing modification statute to allow for release of individuals who are not a significant public safety threat and/or may be eligible for compassionate release, such as elderly and ill inmates.
  • Modify the use of fines/fees by requiring judges to do an ability to pay analysis, eliminate driver’s license revocation and eliminate the use of warrants for failure to pay so that people unable to pay fines arising from even small offenses aren’t forever haunted by making one mistake.
  • Give more people a second chance through an expungement bill that will allow the clearing of isolated or old charges from an adult’s criminal record.
  • Improve criminal justice data transparency on issues such as the imposition of fines and fees, charging, prosecution, sentencing, and incarceration through the collection and release of criminal justice data so we can better understand the drivers of racial disparities and how reform efforts are working.
  • Allow concurrent sentencing for most criminal laws instead of requiring sentences for certain cases with more than one charge to run consecutively (one after another), which has the effect of weighting the plea bargaining process heavily in favor of prosecutors and removing discretion from judges.

When do we meet?

  • The Legislative Committee meets monthly with CSJ. Please contact information: Erica Marshall, Campaign for Smart Justice Manager, at emarshall@aclu-de.org
  • For more information about Legislative Committee please contact Alison Wakelin (wakelin.alison@gmail.com)