Eight candidates have returned questionnaire discussing racial justice and criminal legal reform
CONCORD, N.H. – The ACLU of New Hampshire today unveiled its newest engagement under the ACLU Voter 2020 campaign, this time making public answers from candidates for county attorney on questions of racism, the impact of incarceration, and whether they would deprioritize certain offenses if elected. So far, eight candidates have answered the questionnaire, which is located at http://www.aclu-nh.org/countyattorney.
“Prosecutors in New Hampshire have the power to continue disproportionately flooding jails and prisons – but they also have the power to champion and enact criminal legal reform,” said Joseph Lascaze, smart justice organizer at the ACLU of New Hampshire. “It is imperative that county attorneys in the Granite State acknowledge the existence of systemic racism in our criminal legal system and explain how they will pursue justice for all to the people of New Hampshire.”
“It is all of our responsibilities to hold elected officials accountable—and with county attorneys being a critical part of racial justice, it’s imperative to know where the candidates stand on issues surrounding systemic racism,” said Jordan Thompson, racial justice organizer at the ACLU of New Hampshire. “It is not enough to acknowledge what data approves—that people of color are disproportionately incarcerated in New Hampshire—but then refuse to acknowledge that racism directly contributes to that disparity.”
The six-question survey asks candidates questions on the following topics:
- If they believe systemic racism in the criminal legal system is real.
- If they believe people of color are disproportionately incarcerated in NH, what role prosecutors have played in that, and what they would do to end the disproportionate incarceration of people of color in New Hampshire.
- How they would promote police reform, specifically accountability for police misconduct.
- If they support ending the enforcement of low-level drug offenses, and if they would commit to deprioritizing them.
- If they support the decriminalization of sex work.
- If they believe incarceration solves drug use, poverty, or homelessness, and how they would deprioritize the use of the criminal legal system to address those issues.