I write urging you as a member of the Joint Committee on Public Safety to vote in favor of H.2853, An Act to Establish a Civilian Review Board.
For too long we have allowed our correctional institutions to remain without meaningful oversight. Recent events have brought about long needed review of our prisons by both the administration and your committee. Whatever changes result from these laudable efforts, continuing oversight for the indefinite future will be necessary to resist falling back on the abusive patterns long established. A public/private oversight board as envisioned by H.2853 will ensure that information necessary to the legislature and the public is brought forward in a timely manner. This will allow the legislature and the administration to proactively address issues of safety and health for both Correctional Officers as well as the incarcerated, before those issues become entrenched problems.
I ask you to do whatever you can to ensure a positive vote on this timely matter, and work for its favorable consideration by the entire General Court. I look forward to hearing from you on this matter.