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sentencing

Date: February 21, 2024To: Chairman Evans and Members, House Judiciary CommitteeFrom: Gwen Smith, Criminal Justice Policy Manager, Empower MissouriRe: HB 1655 As the largest and oldest anti-poverty non-profit in our state, Empower Missouri is committed to improving the quality of life for all Missouri residents through advocacy. Since our inception, Empower Missouri has focused on...
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Date: February 22, 2024To: Chairman Lane Roberts and Members of the House Crime Prevention and Public Safety CommitteeFrom: Gwen Smith, Criminal Justice Policy Manager, Empower MissouriRe: Support for HB 1545 Empower Missouri has been committed for over 120 years to improving the quality of life for all Missouri residents through advocacy and policy change. Since...
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Date: February 20th, 2024To: Representative Hannah Kelley, Chairwoman, and Members of the House Committee on Children and FamiliesFrom: Gwen Smith, Criminal Justice Policy Manager, Empower MissouriRe: Support for HB 1996 As the largest and oldest anti-poverty non-profit in our state, Empower Missouri is committed to improving the quality of life for all Missouri residents through...
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“Diversion” is a broad term that refers to the many forms of exit ramps that can divert people from the criminal legal system. Instead of punitive punishment, diversion targets the underlying problems that may have contributed to the criminal behavior, such as poverty, substance use, mental health challenges, and more.   Diversion programs can significantly decrease...
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