Washington D.C., Nov 28, 2018 / 17:00 pm
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops released a letter last week urging the Senate to pass the bipartisan First Step Act, which aims to "improve the lives of thousands of people impacted by our federal criminal justice system."
The First Step Act, currently on the Senate calendar, would end the shackling of pregnant prisoners and would reduce and restrict enhanced sentencing for prior drug felonies.
The act would also establish a maximum geographical distance between prisoners and families, and would help those returning from prison to obtain government ID documents.
The Nov. 20 letter of support was signed by Bishop Frank Dewane of Venice, Florida, Chairman of the Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development; Sister Donna Markham, President & CEO of Catholic Charities USA; and Ralph Middlecamp, President of the National Council of the U.S. Society of St. Vincent de Paul.