Washington D.C., Feb 1, 2013 / 02:13 am
The U.S. bishops' Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development has joined with more than 100 other organizations to call for more fair prison sentencing for minors.
"Life sentences without parole eliminate the opportunity for rehabilitation or second chances," said Bishop Stephen E. Blaire of Stockton, Calif., who chairs the committee.
"While there is no question that violent and dangerous youth need to be confined for their safety and that of society," he said in a Jan. 30 statement, the bishops' conference "does not support provisions that treat children as though they are equal to adults in their moral and cognitive development."
The bishops' committee is one of scores of groups that have endorsed the Statement of Principles of the Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youth. These principles urge an end to sentencing minors to life in prison without possibility of parole.