The Center for Justice and Human Dignity and Aleph Institute Convene Hundreds of Key Criminal Justice Stakeholders Nationwide for Rewriting the Sentence II 2023 Summit, to Promote Alternatives to Incarceration
Washington, D.C. (October 16-17, 2023): The Center for Justice and Human Dignity, a nonprofit organization dedicated to safely reducing the use of incarceration and improving conditions for correctional staff and incarcerated individuals, hosted the Rewriting the Sentence II Summit at the George Washington University Law School on October 16 and 17, 2023.
The Summit brought together hundreds of current and former judges, prosecutors, probation and pretrial officers, individuals directly affected by incarceration, and other key stakeholders in the criminal legal system to exchange ideas about effective alternatives to incarceration and to build sustained networks for their expansion throughout the country, as well as discuss the culture change in the system away from harsh punitiveness and toward greater humanity and alternatives to incarceration. The Rewriting the Sentence II Summit united these decision-makers for a peer-to-peer learning experience involving alternative approaches to criminal justice and highlight a vast array of innovative alternative approaches to sentencing currently used in jurisdictions throughout the country.
“Rewriting the Sentence II comes at an exciting moment for alternatives to incarceration, with federal guidance and directives militating in favor of their expansion, and a hunger for ways to safely reduce the use of incarceration and bring alternative sentencing programs to scale in our country,” says Hanna Liebman Dershowitz, a longtime criminal law policy reform attorney who serves as Director of Policy and Legal Affairs at the Center for Justice and Human Dignity.
This historic event featured a keynote address by Dr. Alisha Moreland-Capuia, McLean Hospital/Harvard Medical School expert on trauma-informed systems transformation, as well as remarks and insights from Bureau of Prisons Director Colette Peters, U.S. Sentencing Commission Chair Hon. Carlton Reeves, U.S. Department of Justice Pardon Attorney Elizabeth Oyer, and many more.
The Summit featured a dozen panels providing expert insights from current and former federal and state judges, prosecutors, probation chiefs, restorative justice practitioners, local legislators, survivors of harm, system-impacted individuals, and other subject matter experts. The convening also highlighted a live conversation with currently incarcerated individuals over Zoom, as well as a mock sentencing workshop with former federal judge Nancy Gertner.
“We are proud of the robust program we have crafted,” says the Center’s Executive Director Christopher Poulos. “With this Summit, we aim to move the needle by highlighting a range of programs attendees can implement in their jurisdictions and tools they can use every day to be more attuned to and compassionate toward the individuals whose lives they directly impact.”
The Center for Justice and Human Dignity, founded in 2021, is a nonprofit organization whose mission is safely reducing the use of incarceration in the United States while improving conditions for incarcerated people and correctional staff. The Center promotes values of human dignity and shared safety while keeping in mind the needs of survivors, directly impacted people, and society at large. Alongside diverse partners, we collaborate with judges and prosecutors on alternative sentencing programs, correctional leaders on conditions of confinement, and policymakers on early release strategies. To learn more about the Center for Justice and Human Dignity, visit cjhd.org.
The Center was incubated at The Aleph Institute, a nonprofit organization formed in 1981 to assist and care for the wellbeing of members of specific populations that are isolated from the regular community: U.S. military personnel, incarcerated individuals, and people institutionalized or at risk of incarceration. Aleph addresses their religious, educational, and spiritual needs, advocates for their civil and religious rights, and provides support to their families. Aleph is committed to criminal justice reform and recidivism reduction through preventive education and faith-based rehabilitation programs, re-entry assistance, alternative sentencing programs and practices, and policy research and recommendations. To learn more about The Aleph Institute, visit aleph-institute.org.
Click here for additional Summit information, including the event’s full program.