In July of 2022, lawmakers in Illinois decided to implement a new law that would reduce the number of residents who were spending time behind bars in the county jails. As the state of Illinois was facing issues with being understaffed in their jails and holding offenders for too long, they decided that something had to be done in the justice system. Illinois lawmakers would gather and deliberate on what many have dubbed the Purge law to help fix their county jail issues.

The Illinois Purge law says that the following 12 charges; Aggravated Battery, Aggravated DUI, Aggravated Fleeing, Burglary, Arson, Drug-Induced Homicide, Intimidation, Kidnapping, Robbery, 2nd-degree Murder, and Threatening a public officer are to be no cash bail offenses. The law states that offenders will be back out in the public unless sufficient evidence is posted in 48 hours or less that proves they are a threat deserving to be locked away. Michigan is also facing some of these same issues, should Michigan adopt the Illinois Purge law to address these concerns?

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Michigan has been dealing with some issues in the country jails and prisons across the state as they are understaffed and overworked as they try to maintain the offenders who are locked away. After looking at the statistics and realizing how many people are arrested for selling marijuana, which is now legal in the state, and other non-violent crimes, the conversation could be had.

The law is called the SAFE-T Act and SAFE-T stands for Safety, Accountability, Fairness, and Equity Today and is said to be one of the first steps in marks a substantial step toward dismantling systemic racism. That plagues our communities, our state, and our nation and brings us closer to true safety, true fairness, and true justice.

There are no rumblings of any conversations or discussions being had about the prisoner-to-officer ratio, the purge law, or its pros and cons. This could be a conversation that the people of the state get the ball rolling on because it affects us more than anyone else as we would be moving amongst the released criminals.

Now a couple of basic things to be aware of:

  • If they are a repeat offender they are more likely to be held in jail
  • Sustainable evidence is needed to hold someone in jail
  • We may see violent and non-violent offenders back on the street and able to strike again
  • Flight risks are more likely to be jailed as well

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