Articles by Aleks Kajstura
Prison Policy Initiative Legal Director Aleks Kajstura (full bio)
- Since you asked: Is social distancing possible behind bars?
The short answer is no - social distancing is even harder behind bars than in nursing homes or on cruise ships.
Apr 3, 2020
- Our list of criminal justice campaigns that can win in 2019
This report has been updated with a new version for 2022. The 2019 legislative session is almost upon us, and we've compiled - as we do every year - a list of....
Dec 12, 2018
- Progress: With reforms in Iowa and Utah, 12,000 fewer people will be denied driver’s licenses every year
Two more states have opted to help safe drivers get their lives back on track after drug convictions.
Aug 29, 2018
- Securus asks FCC to look the other way while it expands; advocates and families call its bluff
In our rebuttal to Securus, we disprove the company's claims of healthy competition in the prison phone market.
Jul 31, 2018
- Families and advocates ask FCC to stop phone giant’s further expansion
We argue that Securus' history of misconduct should make it ineligible to acquire competitor ICSolutions.
Jul 17, 2018
- Your location data: free to anyone with a Securus contract
For nearly a year, the FCC knew about Securus’s cellphone tracking and turned a blind eye.
May 11, 2018
- DC ends driver’s license suspensions for unrelated drug offenses
D.C. will no longer suspend driver's licenses for drug offenses completely unrelated to driving, but 12 states still cling to failed law.
Mar 23, 2018
- Senate bill targets recalcitrant FCC; revitalizes federal fight to lower the cost of calling home
Senators introduced S 2520 in bipartisan effort to put FCC back on track in regulating the cost of calling home from prison or jail.
Mar 12, 2018
- Suspending common sense in Virginia (and 11 other states)
My Washington Post Op-ed explains how states continue to use the war on drugs to meddle with drivers' licenses.
Feb 12, 2018
- Criminal justice campaigns that can win in 2018
States can still determine the future of mass incarceration. We share our ideas for winnable justice reform in 2018.
Dec 20, 2017
- Congresswomen focus on women’s mass incarceration
Democratic Women's Working Group dinner brings experts and Congresswomen together to focus on women's incarceration in the US.
Dec 1, 2017
- Women’s mass incarceration gets Whole Pie analysis
New report details the number of women who are locked up by various correctional systems and why.
Oct 19, 2017
- Jail phone companies flood money into sheriff races
New research shows jail phone companies contributing significant sums to Sheriff's campaigns, in one case funding a quarter of Sheriff's campaign spending.
Oct 12, 2017
- Securus’ claims of low rates undermined by Securus’ actual rates
Securus claims average rates of under 20 cents a minute, Wright Petitioners find no rates under 50 cents in all of Michigan.
Jul 31, 2017
- Advocates ask FCC to block sale of Securus, investigate prison phone giant’s disregard for regulations
Securus fights against regulations and then flouts the ones that survive. FCC should investigate, not approve sale.
Jun 21, 2017
- Evading regulation, some in-state phone calls from jails cost over $1.50 a minute
The first ever national survey of in-state jail phone rates finds some jails charge more than $1.50 a minute.
Jan 19, 2017
- A partial victory: release cards included in CFPB’s new regulations
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s new regulations increase protections for people released from prison and jail, who are often forced to use release cards.
Oct 5, 2016
- FCC’s next regulations should cinch loopholes and address video visitation
In response to the FCC's request for comments, we submitted four analyses of unresolved issues
Jan 21, 2016
- FCC publishes order, seeks further comments
On Friday, the FCC's latest order was published in the Federal Register.
Dec 21, 2015
- New infographic & report: How does women’s incarceration in your state compare to countries across the world?
Report reveals that every US state incarcerates women at higher rate than most countries, shows growth of women's incarceration in the US over the last century.
Nov 18, 2015
- Alternative to incarceration? New report critiques electronic monitoring
Last month James Kilgore published a new report evaluating the use of electronic monitoring as an alternative to incarceration. Drawing on an impressively wide range of....
Nov 17, 2015
- What can states do after the FCC has ruled?
We have two ideas for state legislative strategies to further reduce the cost of calling home from prisons and jails.
Oct 21, 2015
- Comment letter: Bureau of Prisons should not trample families’ financial privacy protections
A couple of weeks ago, we wrote about the Bureau of Prisons' newly proposed rule, which attempts to circumvent financial privacy protections for people who send money to....
Sep 10, 2015
- Alabama’s new phone rates go into effect
Starting tomorrow Alabama begins implementing their prison and jail phone regulations which cap rates and fees for in-state calls. The Alabama Public Service Commission....
Jun 30, 2015
- National Academies video on US incarceration growth
The National Academies recently released a great video highlighting some findings from their 2014 report, The Growth of Incarceration in the United States: Exploring....
Apr 8, 2015
- Consumer Financial Protection Bureau should regulate release cards
PPI submits comment to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau urging regulation of high-fee release cards.
Mar 18, 2015
- Exploiting Inmates
"Exploiting Inmates" by Sukey Lewis in today's East Bay Express presents a great comprehensive overview of the current problems with the prison and jail phone industry
Feb 4, 2015
- Next Steps on prison and jail phone reform: Joint statement by Chairman Wheeler and Commissioner Clyburn
"The wheels of justice turn slowly, but today we prepare to take the next critical step toward reducing the high price paid by inmates and their families to communicate"
Sep 26, 2014
- Tired of corporate stalling, petitioners submit prison phone companies’ own data to FCC
Martha Wright and her fellow petitioners mine prison phone companies' state-mandated disclosures to submit rate data to the FCC when the companies refuse answer the basic questions themselves.
Sep 23, 2014
- Misconceptions about sentencing enhancement zones persist in Conn. Legislature
Conn. legislators continue to support over-reaching, diluted, version of sentencing enhancement law creating urban penalty, failing to protect children.
Apr 4, 2014
- New Report Shows Failure of Connecticut’s Sentencing Enhancement Zones
New report analyzes Connecticut's failed sentencing enhancement zones, reveals law doesn’t work, can’t work, and creates urban penalty.
Apr 3, 2014
- New Report and a Legislative Breakfast on Connecticut’s sentencing enhancement zones
Published a new report on Conn.'s sentencing enhancement zones, presented findings at legislative breakfast.
Mar 28, 2014
- Conn. considers reforming broken school zone law
Conn. Judicial Committee hears testimony in favor of sentencing enhancement zone reform.
Mar 13, 2014
- FCC should remain persistent on prison phone progress
We submitted additional comments to the FCC confirming more kickbacks, and urging the FCC to keep protections in place for people in jail.
Jan 15, 2014
- Portion of FCC prison phone regulations put on hold; rate caps to go into effect 2/11
Court orders stay on some of the FCC's new prison phone regulations, but caps on call rates still go into effect on February 11th.
Jan 14, 2014
- Tell the FCC that all families need to stay in touch
We're partnering with SumOfUs to collect petitions supporting the FCC's next steps in regulating the prison phone industry.
Dec 4, 2013
- FCC denies phone companies’ pleas to delay fair rates
The FCC denies prison phone companies’ petitions to delay implementing fair rates, reiterating the need for regulation.
Nov 26, 2013
- Alabama should implement proposed prison phone reform
PPI submits letter to Alabama Public Service Commission supporting proposed regulations to reign in exorbitant costs jails and prison phone calls.
Nov 14, 2013
- Prison phone company to expand most costly service?
Prison phone company that recently raised their exorbitant fees even higher, recently took steps to bolster their still unregulated single call program.
Nov 8, 2013
- Alabama seeks to curb high cost of prison and jail phone calls
Alabama Public Service Commission caps phone rates and limits fees charged for phone calls from correctional facilities.
Oct 9, 2013
- Hiding commission payments and bypassing regulation
Letter to FCC: crafting effective regulation for prison phone market requires taking a comprehensive view of the commission system, ending high rates.
Aug 3, 2013
- PRRAC Researcher Report: Sentencing Enhancement Zones Fail to Protect Children
Most states give longer mandatory sentences to Black and Latino drug defendants under flawed statutes that punish people based not on the offense committed but on where they live.
Dec 30, 2008