ACLU Statement on Reports of FIRST STEP Act Moving Forward in Senate

December 11, 2018 2:00 pm

Media Contact
125 Broad Street
18th Floor
New York, NY 10004
United States

WASHINGTON — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced today that he will bring a bipartisan criminal justice reform package, the FIRST STEP Act, to the floor for a Senate vote before the end of session.

Jesselyn McCurdy, deputy director of the Washington Legislative Office at the American Civil Liberties Union, had the following reaction:

“We’re encouraged by Senator McConnell’s commitment today to bringing the FIRST STEP Act to the floor. This bill makes modest but important improvements to our criminal justice system. It has the votes to pass, and we urge senators to move it forward now without negotiations that would water the bill down further.

“America is in the midst of a mass incarceration crisis, and the passage of this bill will help send an important message to the rest of the country about the urgency of addressing that crisis. We applaud the bipartisan group of senators who have listened to advocates by strengthening the FIRST STEP Act with important sentencing reforms. When this bill comes to the floor, we urge Senators to vote yes so that we can deliver some measure of justice to those harmed by our criminal justice system and move us closer to building a system that truly works for the people.”

More information about the ACLU’s position on the FIRST STEP Act can be found here:

By completing this form, I agree to receive occasional emails per the terms of the ACLU’s privacy policy.

The latest in Smart Justice

ACLU's Vision

The American Civil Liberties Union is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States of America.

Learn More About Smart Justice

Smart Justice issue image

The ACLU Campaign for Smart Justice is an unprecedented, multiyear effort to reduce the U.S. jail and prison population by 50% and to challenge racism in the criminal legal system.