father and son

How the Prison System Creates ‘Absentee Dads’—and Hurts the Kids They Leave Behind

Most experts agree that having an incarcerated parent puts children at a physical, behavioral and educational disadvantage. But the especially harmful impact on kids whose fathers are behind bars —and on the dads themselves—is largely ignored by the criminal justice system, write two RTI International social science researchers.

vaping

Will a Vaping Ban Work?

The federal government is expected to propose a tougher policy against e-cigarettes within the next few weeks. But it may end up further accelerating the use of black-market THC-laced vape pens that are believed to be a factor in the outbreak of illnesses and deaths among users, warns a health writer.

maori

Community Justice, Maori-Style

 A pair of New Zealand programs that involve tribal communities in setting parameters for punishment and rehabilitation offer useful models for U.S. policymakers hoping to dismantle mass incarceration, reports the co-director of Columbia University’s Justice Lab.

polygraph

How Lie Detector Tests Can Damage U.S. National Security 

The Supreme Court, backed by research, has ruled that polygraph tests can’t be used as conclusive proof of guilt or innocence. They never caught, for example, convicted spy Aldrich Ames. So why do the FBI and other security agencies still use them in their hiring procedures?

crime scene

Crime Victims Need ‘Civil Justice’ as Much as Defendants

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors recently decided to study the feasibility of a “Civil Defense Justice Unit” to protect the rights of justice-involved in civil proceedings. They should expand that to protect victims’ rights as well, writes the president of LA’s Association of Deputy District Attorneys.

Kamala Harris

Kamala Harris, Police Shootings and ‘Safety’

Sen. Harris’ recent justice reform plan called for a federal board to review incidents involving police use-of-force against civilians and other “severe” misconduct. It’s a good idea, but the devil is in the details, warns TCR’s legal affairs columnist.