Steyer unveils criminal justice reform plan

Democratic presidential candidate Tom SteyerTom SteyerBloomberg wages war on COVID-19, but will he abandon his war on coal? Overnight Energy: 600K clean energy jobs lost during pandemic, report finds | Democrats target diseases spread by wildlife | Energy Dept. to buy 1M barrels of oil Ocasio-Cortez, Schiff team up to boost youth voter turnout MORE has proposed a plan to redirect funds to education and early intervention strategies to limit costs associated with incarceration as part of his criminal justice reform plan unveiled Thursday. 

Steyer said the current criminal justice system “was built on racism, and preys on the poor and the socioeconomically disadvantaged.” Additionally, he said the system is costly to taxpayers, estimating a sum of up to $182 billion they pay a year. 

The candidate proposes creating a system that invests in education and early intervention strategies, and, like many of his other follow Democratic contenders, plans to end the cash bail system. 


He also plans to double the amount of federal funding for juvenile justice and wants to create a Bureau of Juvenile Justice within the Justice Department to oversee criminal justice issues impacting youth.

The bureau would administer grant programs to states that encourage “innovation and progressive outcomes.”

Steyer also pledged to end the prosecution of minors in adult courts, keep children under 12 out of the criminal justice system and put an end to solitary confinement for all youth. 

The plan also includes measures to reform policing, including banning the use of facial recognition and investing $500 million in community policing. 

Steyer has been gaining on some of his opponents in a few early voting states, but is still lagging behind the top candidates in most polls. The billionaire registers at 2.3 percent in a RealClearPolitics average of national polls.

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