Alexander Mallin and Luke Barr - April 10, 2020 By the time Ronald Reynolds took his first steps of freedom in 29 years out of the front gates of Louisiana’s State Penitentiary, the coronavirus had already begun its quiet, deadly spread through America’s communities that would upend the lives of millions in a span of weeks. It was Jan. 29, and Reynolds had plans in store. After being convicted of second-degree murder in 1993 and sentenced to life without parole, Reynolds spen
Eric Westervelt - April 9, 2020 California is releasing thousands of inmates early due to the pandemic without adequate transportation, support services or housing once they get out, statewide prison advocates and reentry service providers say. "Absolutely do not stop folks from coming home, but we need realistic resources," says London Croudy, with Legal Services for Prisoners with Children, a nonprofit that advocates for inmates' rights and the formerly incarcerated. "We wa
Sierra Darville - April 10, 2020 Gov. Tom Wolf announced Friday that his office had ordered state Department of Corrections officials to establish a temporary program to suspend prison sentences in order to help the department in the transfer of qualifying inmates to community corrections facilities or home confinement amid the coronavirus pandemic. “We can reduce our non-violent prison population and leave fewer inmates at risk for contracting COVID-19 while maintaining publ
Resolve Philly, which leads a collaborative of 24 Philadelphia-area news organizations, will serve as the backbone for a coordinated citywide crisis-response plan that provides news and information access, and is powered by its partners and other local organizations and institutions. Partners will collaborate to gather, produce, and disseminate localized, urgent, and up-to-date reporting and public-health information, which will be translated and published in Spanish and addi
"All Pennsylvania courts have been ordered closed until May 1, 2020. Our offices are also closed during this time, but our Defenders continue to work from home.
The First Judicial District and the Defender Association’s office are scheduled to re-open on May 4, if there are no further delays. If you have been given a hearing date that is scheduled to happen before May 1, it will be rescheduled by the court once they return to normal scheduling
Since the courts closed thre
Jeremy Roebuck and Chris Palmer - April 11, 2020 A 26-year-old woman from University City who couldn’t come up with the $500 she needed for bail on an aggravated-assault charge. A 58-year-old Holmesburg man who had already spent more than five months behind bars for a first-time DUI offense. And a 43-year-old woman with a string of prostitution convictions weeks away from serving her minimum jail term. All began last week as inmates in a jail system under siege from a coronav
Eli Hager April 8, 2020 Michelle E. of Scottsdale, Arizona, was relieved when President Trump last month signed into law the sweeping stimulus package intended to keep the U.S. economy afloat during the coronavirus pandemic. Michelle and her husband have owned a small hardwood flooring business for 18 years. She hoped the law’s $350 billion for small-business loans would help them avoid laying off any of their five employees, whom she said are like family. So she got a loan a
As the City’s workforce development board, Philadelphia Works, Inc. fully understands the severity of the economic impact that COVID-19 is having on our local economy. Businesses and individuals are navigating their priorities regarding health, safety, and the ability to sustain during these uncertain times. During this critical time, Philadelphia Works is continuing their mission to increase economic opportunity for all Philadelphia residents. Below you will find workforce i
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Can I still receive mental health, behavioral health, and/or substance use services at this time?
Yes. Pennsylvania has relaxed program rules to allow healthcare providers to offer services using“telehealth.” Telehealth is a way to provide health services from a distance using technology. Services may be provided over the phone or in two-way video calls (like Skype, FaceTime, etc.). Can I still receive interpretation services at this time?
The economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic seems to escalate each day. To date, the focus has largely been on shoring up small and large for-profit companies. But the impact on community-based organizations that provide critical services to people involved in the criminal justice system is also starting to show. Programs have closed. Reentry and behavioral health practitioners have lost their jobs. And organizations trying to stay afloat are finding themselves competing fo