Milwaukee County wins grant to reduce jail use and racial disparities

 Milwaukee County was one of 20 jurisdictions selected on Wednesday to receive a $150,000 grant to create a more effective criminal justice system. 

The grant is a part of the Safety and Justice Challenge, the MacArthur Foundation's $75 million initiative to reduce over-incarceration by changing the way the country thinks about and uses jails. 

According to the Milwaukee Community Justice Council, Milwaukee County will use the support to ensure that appropriate evidence based risk assessments drive decisions about who is detained in its local jails.

The Justice Council said that Wisconsin has the highest incarceration rate for black men in the country and that in Milwaukee, the poverty rate for blacks is four times greater than for whites, a racial disparity that is second worst in the country. 

One goal of Milwaukee County  is to develop a better understanding of these issues, and to take the steps necessary to ensure detention decisions at any point in the criminal justice system are risk and need based, while being race, gender, and economic status neutral. 

In 2016, as many as 10 of these jurisdictions will receive a second round of funding, between $500,000 to $2 million annually, to implement their plans over two years.

Sheriff David Clarke issued a response to the County getting this grant which said:

\"After the city went through a violent stretch this year and last, we had these criminal coddlers calling for a crackdown on crime: Barrett, Flynn, Kremers, and Abele -- saying we need to get tough on criminals. 

There ARE no racial or economic disparities in the criminal justice system anywhere. Am I clear on that? There IS a lifestyle choice problem which is a self-inflicted pathology. Lifestyle choices like father-absent homes, having kids but not raising them properly, failing in school, drug use, and criminal behavior are what explain the disparities. 

After a period of time, these soft-on-crime advocates go back to playing this race card game with criminal justice. Author Thomas Sowell has written extensively about this mental self-cleansing. 

It is an exercise in liberal white guilt. Now this group wants to help put the same career criminals, who police repeatedly arrest, back on the street. Mayor Barrett and Chief Flynn were just pounding the table asking for tougher laws to keep criminals in jail. Now they are part of the group trying to keep them out. 

This is why Milwaukee continues to be the violent city that it is according to Forbes Magazine. Forbes points out that soft crime policies are considered in its rankings. 

Notice that one person is missing from the hold-hands-and-sing-Kumbaya group. Yours truly! No surprise there! No dissenting or diverse views are welcome with these soft-on-crime criminal coddlers.\"

Safety and Justice Challenge

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