Criminal Justice is on the Ballot

It’s been four months since Americans took to the streets to protest the death of George Floyd. Today, in cities and counties across California, they’ll get the chance to vote on issues affecting policing and racial justice.

There are at least seven local ballot measures in California that would impact criminal justice. Los Angeles’ Measure J would require at least 10% of the county’s general fund be spent on housing, mental health, and alternatives to incarceration. In Oakland, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, and Sonoma County, voters will be asked to increase police oversight.

There are statewide ballot measures impacting criminal justice too. Proposition 20 would roll back some provisions of recent criminal justice reform measures that critics say endanger public safety and hamper DNA collection efforts. Proposition 25 would uphold Senate Bill 10, which calls for the elimination of cash bail.

Racial justice and policing issues are also at the center of some district attorney races. The most high-profile is in Los Angeles County, where Jackie Lacey is facing a tough re-election campaign. Her opponent, former San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón, and civil rights groups say Lacey has failed to hold police officers accountable for misconduct.


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