Build Programs, Not Jails!

Join our campaign to stop Champaign county from building a $32 million jail and investing instead in programs and services to help our community thrive!

Take Action! Build Programs, Not Jails meets regularly at the Independent Media Center in Urbana, IL. Check back often for our updated meeting schedule.

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Recent News

Public Event with Build Programs, Not Jails and State Representative Carol Ammons
Participate with State Representative Carol Ammons and Build Programs, Not Jails as we examine and discuss the future of Criminal Justice in Champaign County.
Jails: Time to Wake Up to Mass Incarceration in Your Neighborhood
Build Programs, Not Jails member, James Kilgore examines the need to add jails to the discussion of mass incarceration. Check out his recent article on Truthout.
Needs Assessment Submitted: What Next?
On September 24th, Dr. Alan Kalmanoff presented the needs assessment on the criminal justice system to the County Board. This brought an investigation which lasted more than a year to a close. Kalmanoff's report largely concurred with what the Board appointed Community Justice Task Force had presented in their submission in June. Both have emphasized the need for a thorough re-working of the criminal justice system and downplayed any notion of building new jails cells.
The Cost of Law Enforcement in Champaign County
An enormous amount of taxes are going toward a process for 600 people employed in law enforcement to chase 8000 people who break the law (and only about 1000 are violent crimes) in a county of 200,000 people. Here's what the tax payers in Champaign County pay for one year's worth of law enforcement
Update on the No More Jails Campaign
The Community Justice Task Force, a body appointed by the County Board to study alternatives to incarceration, presented its report on June 25th. They recommended a shift toward restorative justice and an increase in the percentage of the Public Safety Sales Tax ($4 million per year) that goes to prevention from 5% to 30%. CUCPJ support this and is calling for a re-entry program, Racial Justice Task Force, and a community-based mental health facility. Join our next planning meeting August 21at at 6pm at the Independent Media Center (downtown Urbana post office).
Opportunity to Get Involved with the No More Jails Campaign - Aug. 21 6pm at the IMC
Our No More Jails Campaign is moving to a crucial stage as the County Board gets ready to vote on a potential expansion of the jail this Fall. In preparation, we would like to invite you to an action-oriented No More Jails planning session on August 21st at 6pm at the Independent Media Center.
May 17th Deadline to Give Input on the Consultant’s Report
After pressure from the community and members of CU Citizens for Peace and Justice, the county and consultant Dr. Alan Kalmanoff have extended the deadline to receive comments on the Champaign County Criminal Justice System Assessment Draft Report at May 17th. Your comments are needed to ensure that final report reflects the needs of the community. Please take time to share.
May 2nd at 6pm: Public Input on Needs Assessment for the Jail
Needs assessment is now available for download. Come tell the county board what you think Thursday, May 2 at 6pm.
Lloyd Carter Jr. Asks How Things Got So Bad for the Champaign Criminal Justice System
https://youtu.be/CRETi3QNHCw...
Julia Reitz Doesn't Think There Needs To Be a "Token Person of Color" on the Jail Planning Team
https://youtu.be/D-2Hijgkg5Y...
Reverend Bogan Speaks to the Cuts Community Programs Have Taken In Recent Years
https://youtu.be/kB5qFf3LsdQ  ...
County Board Member Stan James Claims His Constituents Support Incarceration
https://youtu.be/P0M4_ix4ybA...