SENATE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . No. 2823
Senate, July 13, 2020 – Text of the Senate amendment (Senator Chandler) to the Senate Bill to reform police standards and shift resources to build a more equitable, fair and just commonwealth that values Black lives and communities of color (Senate, No. 2800)
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts
In the One Hundred and Ninety-First General Court
by inserting after section 66 the following section:-
"SECTION 66A. (a) There shall be a commission to make an investigation and study to: (i) dismantle structural racism in a systemic way that eliminates the violence of arrest, disparities of incarceration and barriers to positive community re-entry; (ii) systematically, comprehensively and iteratively review where and how the systemic presence of structural and institutional racism in the department of correction has generated a culture or practices and policies that produces racial inequality, trauma or disparate impacts and outcomes by race among and between incarcerated persons, corrections officers or other department of correction staff or families of incarcerated persons; provided, however, that the scope of such review shall include mapping the various subsystems interacting with and within the criminal justice system, including, but not limited to, policing, parole and re-entry, that in their intersection with the work and mission of the department of correction produce or accelerate racial inequality or disparate impacts by race; (iii) recommend policies within the department of correction that focus on restorative justice program access, health care continuums, public health and behavioral health impacting people of color in the commonwealth such as socially determinative conditions regarding incarceration, probation, parole and community reentry, including, but not limited to, social indicators of health before, during and after incarceration that include health issues such as post-traumatic stress disorder that department staff and incarcerated persons experience in corrections and physical or behavioral health issues as a result of violence in policing and use of force; (iv) propose programs for implementation by the department of correction that benefit corrections community members, including, but not limited to: (A) language supports for incarcerated English learners; (B) anti-racism training for all department community members regardless of position or ethnic identity; and (C) educational opportunities for correction officers and incarcerated residents; and (v) provide a road map for the establishment of a publicly-funded permanent government entity with expertise to dismantle structural racism that shall: (1) recommend actual internal changes to the department of correction; (2) make administrative or policy recommendations to the governor and specific executive agencies; and (3) make legislative recommendations to the general court. The programs described in clause (iv) may include programs to promote interpersonal trust, relationships, wellness and quality of life of incarcerated persons and staff, to provide educational and personal development opportunities and historical bias and anti-racism training and to improve the correctional physical and administrative structure such as green space, adequate staffing space, facilities resources, communications and management.
(b) The commission shall consist of the following 31 members: 3 members of the Massachusetts Black and Latino Legislative Caucus appointed by the caucus, 1 of whom shall be the chair of the commission as selected by the caucus; 3 persons appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives, 1 of whom shall be selected from a list of nominees from Citizens for Juvenile Justice, Inc., 1 of whom shall be a member of the Legislative Criminal Justice Reform Caucus and 1 of whom shall be selected from a list of nominees from Prisoners’ Legal Services; 2 persons appointed by the senate president; the secretary of public safety and security or a designee; the undersecretary of criminal justice or a designee; 7 persons appointed by the governor, 1 of whom shall be selected from a list of nominees from the Boston branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People New England Area Conference, 1 of whom shall be selected from a list of nominees from the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts, Inc, 1 of whom shall be selected from a list of nominees from the ACLU Racial Justice Program, 1 of whom shall be selected from a list of nominees from the Dimock Health Center, Inc., 1 of whom shall have medical and behavioral health expertise in the incarceration setting, 1 of whom shall be a member of the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice and 1 of whom shall have expertise in trauma and adverse child experiences; 3 persons appointed jointly by the undersecretary of criminal justice and the commission chair who shall be incarcerated persons, at least 1 of whom shall be selected from a list of nominees from the African American Coalition Committee and at least 1 of whom shall be a person who has demonstrated a commitment to persons that are foreign born; 3 persons appointed jointly by the undersecretary of criminal justice and the commission chair, all of whom shall be correctional officers and at least 1 of whom shall be a member of the Massachusetts Correction Officers Federated Union; 3 members appointed jointly by the undersecretary of criminal justice and the commission chair, all of whom shall be members of the department of correction administration; 3 members appointed jointly by the undersecretary of criminal justice and the commission chair, all of whom shall be family members of persons currently incarcerated; and 2 members appointed jointly by the undersecretary of criminal justice and the commission chair, both of whom shall be formerly incarcerated persons. An appointing authority with 2 or more appointments shall ensure that their appointments draw from socially and economically disadvantaged and historically underrepresented groups.
All appointments shall be made not later than 30 days following the effective date of this section and the chair of the commission shall convene the first meeting of the commission not later than 60 days after such effective date. The commission shall meet not less than 4 times.
(c) The department of correction shall assist the commission in facilitating the participation of department staff and incarcerated persons, including, but not limited to, providing necessary transportation of incarcerated persons, videoconferencing or other appropriate online or electronic communication and access to available and appropriate space at a correctional facility or administrative office. Participation by department staff may be considered by the department to be included in such employees’ regular workday activities. The department, or any other state agency as defined in section 1 of chapter 29 of the General Laws, shall assist the commission in gathering relevant information about current operations, programs, staffing and budgets.
(d) Not later than March 31, 2021, the commission shall submit a report with recommendations for legislation, if any, together with drafts of legislation necessary to carry its recommendations into effect, by filing the same with the clerks of the house of representatives and the senate, the joint committee on the judiciary, the joint committee on public safety and homeland security and the house and senate committees on ways and means.
(e) Not later than 6 weeks after March 31, 2021 or 6 weeks from the date of the filing of the report, whichever is later, the department of correction shall file a report on actions being taken to respond to the commission’s report with the clerks of the house of representatives and the senate, the Massachusetts Black and Latino Caucus, the joint committee on the judiciary, the joint committee on public safety and homeland security and the house and senate committees on ways and means,."