Why You Should Be A Criminal Legal Reform Advocate

There is little disagreement that Oklahoma’s criminal legal system is broken.  Oklahoma has one of the highest incarceration rates in the world for a reason. One in five Oklahomans has a criminal record. This means you probably know someone or are someone who has been impacted by our system. Despite significant progress made over recent years by criminal legal reform […]

Our Top Policy Priorities This Legislative Session

Oklahomans for Criminal Justice Reform is thankful for the opportunity to help educate the public and policymakers at the Capitol this legislative session as we all work towards a more equitable criminal legal system for all Oklahomans.  With this in mind, we would like to highlight just a few of the areas where the state is poised to make progress […]

Women’s History Month: The Past, Present, and Future

March is Women’s History Month. Women’s History Month is a celebration of women’s contributions to history, culture and society and has been observed annually in the month of March in the United States since 1987. This month provides us all with an opportunity to remember, write about, and share stories about both the diversity of women’s lived experiences and the […]

New Report: Analysis: Marijuana Enforcement in Oklahoma

Have you seen our latest analysis? Our data shows that law enforcement officers continue to arrest and prosecute thousands of Oklahomans for having small amounts of marijuana despite voter and legislatively approved reforms aimed at reducing harmful contact with the criminal justice system.  Key findings in the analysis include: Read the full report below.

The Truths of SQ820

The history of the criminalization of marijuana is filled with racial biases. It was targeted in the 1930s as an “alien scourge” and criminalized due to its association with Black and Latin American communities. Criminalization was never about public health. Tobacco, which is the leading cause of preventable death in the world, and alcohol, which is the third leading cause […]

How Can Law Enforcement Build Trust With Black Americans?

The brutal killing of Tyre Nichols at the hands of Memphis police has once again reignited a crucial conversation about the disproportionate and often devastating impact of police and courts on Black Americans. The list of names of unarmed Black people killed by police is now a part of America’s collective history and our collective grief. How do we reckon […]

Can Police Militarization Be Justified?

Governments across the world are attempting to combat crime. The United States, and in particular, rural Oklahoma law enforcement agencies have increasingly turned towards “tough on crime” tactics including military equipment and long sentences to curb crime in their jurisdictions. Unfortunately, these tactics are extremely flawed and only serve to alleviate  specific symptoms of crime rather than actually cure the […]

A Step in the Right Direction: 2022 in Review

The year 2022 is nearly in the rearview mirror, so now is a good time to take stock of where Oklahoma is as a state and where it is headed. This year offered several historic steps forward for the criminal legal system, while also highlighting opportunities for future reform. Advocates, lawmakers, and voters all worked to change how we treat […]

Your Vote is Your Voice

Written by: Ashley Bender and Michael Olson Your vote is your voice.  It is easy to feel that your individual vote may not have a huge impact, but if your vote joins enough others in your voting district or county, then your vote undoubtedly matters. More than 130,000 Oklahomans have already cast ballots, either in person or by mail. Data […]