Criminal Justice

Black man wearing brightly colored daishiki holds his arms out as he stands before a large group of police officers wearing riot gear.

How Can Rethinking Policing Reverse the Mass Incarceration Epidemic?

A new report from the Vera Institute of Justice breaks down how a single negative interaction with a police officer can alter a life forever—and how a shift in how the nation approaches justice can prevent the criminalization of people of color.

A Black man wearing a t-shirt that says "Ferguson is everywhere" protests at night.

Message From the Ferguson Grassroots, 5 Years After Michael Brown's Death

Five years after the Michael Brown Rebellion, key activists and organizers weigh in on the impact of their local movement. 

Melissa McKinnies and Danye Jones. Black woman and Black boy sit next to each other and smile.

Activist Melissa McKinnies on the Mike Brown Rebellion—And the Lynching of Her Son Danye

Melissa McKinnies was a Ferguson uprising fixture. It’s for this reason that the St. Louis mother believes that one of her sons was lynched in their backyard. Here are her words.

Meek Mill. Black man with short dark hair wearing gray suit jacket and white collared shirt.

'Free Meek' Docuseries Illustrates Plight of Black Men in Criminal Justice System

The five-part series explores racial injustice in the judicial system through the all too common case of rapper Meek Mill.

Michael Brown Jr. A drawing of a Black boy wearing headphones on a brown background

Missing Mike-Mike: Michael Brown Sr. Reflects on the 5 Years Since His Son Became a Political Symbol

Before Michael Brown Jr. became an international symbol of racialized police violence, he was an 18-year-old who cracked jokes, made music and planned for his future. Here, a deeply personal reflection by his dad on the fifth anniversary of his killing.

White police officer stands in front of a store at night with police car visible in the background.

It's Still Dangerous to Drive While Black in Ferguson

Black drivers in Missouri continue to be stopped by police at a much higher rate than White drivers.

Christopher Remmey. Man in profile with mustache and beard sitting in low light looks past the camera.

WATCH: Doc Explores How Criminal Justice System Fails People With Mental Illnesses

“Forty hours of mental health training in a police academy that’s seven-and-a-half months long isn’t long enough.”

New York State Supreme Court building in Manhattan showing the words "The True Administration of Justice" on its facade.

Report Says State Supreme Court Justices Are Overwhelmingly White, Male

State courts wield a lot of power; the justices “hear 95 percent of all cases filed in the United States.”

long shot inside prison that shows prison bars and men's arms peeking through some of the bars.

Private Prisons Ask ICE to Pay Multi-Million Dollar Human Trafficking Lawsuit Costs

Private immigration detention center operator GEO Group faces lawsuits alleging human rights violations.

Bryan Stevenson. Black man in gray jacket suit, black pants and tie, white shirt, standing on the steps of a courthouse.

EXCLUSIVE: Powerful Clip From HBO Doc on Bryan Stevenson's Liberatory Work

In “True Justice,” the Equal Justice Initiative founder connects the dots between enslavement and death sentences for Black people—and breaks down why he is committed to ending mass incarceration.

New York State Capitol Building

New York State Prepares to Decriminalize Sex Work

A new bill aims to protect sex workers, particularly immigrant and trans workers of color.

Black man in dark shit sits on couch with teen daughter as they work on a black laptop

Q&A: Meet the Formerly Incarcerated Dad Who Created an App to Connect Families

Colorlines talks to Antoine Patton about Photo Patch, the app he created with his daughter after teaching himself to code behind bars.

Lonnie Morris and Richard Lathan. Two middle-aged Black men in prison uniforms, blue and yellow, in front of a gate.

LISTEN: San Quentin State Prison Podcast 'Ear Hustle' Returns for New Season

Season four introduces listeners to a new host and a segment about learning the ropes in the prison.

Albert Woodson. Older Black man with gray Afro holding up oar while in a canoe.

'Solitary' Film to Tell Story of Angola 3's Albert Woodfox

Mahershala Ali will executive produce, and perhaps star, in biopic of the Black man who spent 43 years in solitary confinement for a crime he says he didn’t commit.

a young Black girl with ponytails, blue overalls and a black biker jacket, walks with an older man wearing a blue baseball cap and a black and blue tracksuit. The man holds a sign that reads, "stop killing me"

Where Does Your State Rank When It Comes to Black Homicide?

A new study ranks states according to the number of Black teens and adults killed.

An old, abandoned state penitentiary cellblock bathed in sunlight.

How An Antiquated Reading of the Law Prevents the Formerly Incarcerated From Voting in Georgia

State officials maintain a strict interpretation of the law, which prevents voting by anyone convicted of a “felony involving moral turpitude.”

Three black women two of whom are wearing sunglasses one of whom is wearing glasses cheer at a rally

Black Census Project Reveals Electorate's Concerns—and Power

More than half of the 30,000+ survey participants said that politicians do not care about them or their interests.

Black man wearing blue shirt and black glasses sits with his hands folded.

Second Chance Pell Experiment Expands Education Behind Bars

The program provides need-based grants to people incarcerated in state and federal prisons so that they can take college courses.

Silhouette of a woman carrying a toddler with a child who appears between five and six years old walking to her left they are all facing an opening that peers at a car on a driveway

REPORT: 4 Strategies to Eliminate the Harmful Effects of Systemic Racism

A new study from Urban Institute gathers insights from leading policymakers, advocates and experts to present ways to imagine a future without the dangerous, long-term consequences of structural racism.

Illustration. Black woman with Afro black turtle neck and sign saying "we're bailing out Black mothers..."

Activists Organize to Bail Out Black Mamas for Mother's Day

In more than two dozen cities across the country, mothers who cannot afford bail are getting help to get home.