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What Do Victims Want To See In Criminal Justice Reform?

Paul Matthew Photography/

There are a handful of proposals at the Statehouse that attempt to cut down on prison time in favor of rehabilitation. Supporters believe this reduces Ohio’s overcrowded prisons and reduce repeat offenses. One group is trying to bring the voice of victims into the conversations.

It might seem intuitive to think that most survivors of crime want offenders locked away for a long time.

But that’s not the case, according to a studyfrom the Alliance for Safety and Justice. It shows 61% of victims want shorter prison sentences. As the group’s Robert Rooks puts it, the lives of victims and offenders are closely intertwined by their circumstances.

“It’s very common to have someone that has one son in prison and another son in the cemetery.”

Rooks says victims would rather see more investment in education, substance abuse treatment and rehabilitation services which can prepare offenders to return to their communities.

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