Statement from Khalil Two Formerly Incarcerated New Yorkers Criminal Justice Reform Measures in Governor Cuomo’s State of the State Address

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
January 15, 2019
Contact: Melissa Mansfield (mmansfield@skdknick.com) 518.339.7769

STATEMENT FROM KHALIL TWO FORMERLY INCARCERATED NEW YORKERS CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM MEASURES IN GOVERNOR CUOMO’S STATE OF THE STATE ADDRESS

Topeka K. Sam and Khalil A. Cumberbatch Are Co-Founders of New Yorkers United for Justice

**CUMBERBATCH, SAM AVAILABLE FOR INTERVIEWS TODAY**

“As formerly incarcerated New Yorkers, we have both experienced the brunt of a flawed system, “said Khalil A. Cumberbatch and Topeka K. Sam, Chief Strategist and Senior Advisor to New Yorkers United for Justice, a coalition of twelve local and national nonprofits that have come together to push for an ambitious criminal justice reform agenda for New York. “This session New York has an incredible opportunity to begin to fix that broken system through bold, meaningful reforms like those the Governor and legislative leaders have called for. Now is the time to turn these priorities into action, achieve real results and end the cycle of injustice.”

Sam and Cumberbatch continued: “New Yorkers United for Justice will work closely and constructively with legislative leaders, the Governor and fellow advocates as language is written and bills are posted to push for the broadest, strongest package possible. Families have waited a long time, their expectations are high, and today they have more reason for hope. Now is the time for us to mobilize, engage and press until the long-lasting reforms that families deserve are realized. Let’s make New York the nation’s leader in a fair and just system.”

Sam and Cumberbatch concluded: “New Yorkers United for Justice is focused on a broad reform agenda that includes overdue pretrial reforms, like bail, discovery, speedy trial and civil asset forfeiture. We are heartened that the Governor named several of these, as well as marijuana expungement, as top priorities. We will also encourage reforms to the current parole system and greater executive action on clemency, and though these were not mentioned today, we will be pushing for inclusion in the state’s agenda.”

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