The Future of Parole Release: A Ten-Point Reform Plan

Michael Tonry ed., Crime and Justice: A Review of Research, 2016, Forthcoming

Minnesota Legal Studies Research Paper No. 16-03

69 Pages Posted: 11 Oct 2015 Last revised: 23 Jan 2016

Edward Rhine

Ohio State University (OSU) - Department of Sociology; University of Minnesota - Twin Cities - Robina Institute of Criminal Law and Criminal Justice

Joan Petersilia

Stanford University

Kevin R Reitz

University of Minnesota Law School; Robina Institute of Criminal Law & Criminal Justice

Date Written: September 16, 2015

Abstract

This article lays out a 10-point program for the improvement of discretionary parole release systems in America. Taken together, our recommendations coalesce into an ambitious model that has never before existed in the US. Even if adopted separately, our recommendations would work substantial incremental improvements in the current practices of all paroling systems.

The article is written by three authors who have taken sharply different views on the fundamental question of whether contemporary determinate or indeterminate sentencing systems have been the more successful systems across American states. Likewise, the authors have given different advice to jurisdictions on whether parole release should be retained, abolished, or reinstituted (Rhine 2012; Petersilia 2003; Reitz 2004). Nonetheless, the authors agree that discretionary parole-release is an important feature of U.S. sentencing and corrections that will not disappear in the foreseeable future — and all three share a common interest in improving those systems as much as possible. Indeed, regardless of one’s views on the “determinacy/indeterminacy” debate, it would be irresponsible not to give assistance to the majority of states that continue to vest meaningful authority over prison sentence length in paroling agencies.

Suggested Citation

Rhine, Edward and Petersilia, Joan and Reitz, Kevin R, The Future of Parole Release: A Ten-Point Reform Plan (September 16, 2015). Michael Tonry ed., Crime and Justice: A Review of Research, 2016, Forthcoming; Minnesota Legal Studies Research Paper No. 16-03. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2672033

Edward Rhine

Ohio State University (OSU) - Department of Sociology

Columbus, OH 43210-1172
United States

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities - Robina Institute of Criminal Law and Criminal Justice ( email )

University of Minnesota Law School
229 19th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55455
United States

Joan Petersilia (Contact Author)

Stanford University ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Kevin R Reitz

University of Minnesota Law School ( email )

229 19th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55455
United States
612-626-3078 (Phone)

Robina Institute of Criminal Law & Criminal Justice ( email )

University of Minnesota Law School
229 19th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55455
United States

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