To: Congress

STOP THE RAIDS, REFORM RICO AND END OVER-PROSECUTION OF OUR COMMUNITIES

STOP THE RAIDS, REFORM RICO AND END OVER-PROSECUTION OF OUR COMMUNITIES

Petition text: RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act of 1970) laws were initially designed to prosecute powerful organized crime syndicates like the Mafia. Over the past few years, RICO has been used to excessively charge young people of color from low-income neighborhoods as if they were gangsters.

We are asking you to ACT NOW to #ReformRICO and stop prosecutors from using these federal laws, originally designed to take down the Mob, to score easy convictions against poor communities of color. Innocent teens and young adults are often forced to take plea deals when faced with first-degree conspiracy counts on which they can face a max of 25 years to life in prison. The overwhelming majority of those charged never see trial. RICO laws are disastrous and have ruined lives, torn apart families and contributed to the enormous racial inequities we have come to expect with mass incarceration.

These are our generation's "Super Predators".

Why is this important?

Trump's inaugural pledge for "Law & Order" is coded messaging to law enforcement agencies, both local and federal, that will empower them to continue their abusive, racialized policing. This will mean more arrests and more incarceration at a time when America should be moving away from needless punishment of Blacks and Latinos.

Collaboration between local police department and federal law enforcement in large, military-style "gang" raids have been cheered on by sensationalized media reports. They describe these young men as all being dangerous and part of organized criminal enterprises--which they were not.

Over the past few years we have seen the emergence of a bipartisan consensus for criminal and civil justice reforms. Movements are growing across our nation urging legislators to change unfair laws that hurt families and communities of color. A wasted $80 billion a year spent on prisons actually dehumanizes inmates, many who are detained in inhuman conditions, some tortured in solitary confinement and denied visits or communication with their families.

Sign this petition, spearheaded by family members of those charged with RICO. Demand that Congress take ACTION NOW to #ReformRICO

How it will be delivered

We will email the signatures, deliver them in person and hold press conference


Reasons for signing

  • It needs to be said that RICO has been used to destroy radical Black and Puerto Rican organizations and imprison activists! Any attempt to reform RICO needs to make mention of this fact.
  • This is another tactic on the part of the state to maintain oppression against African and Indigenous people. We must boss up.
  • Silence is complicity... If I don't speak up or stand out whom will be left to stand in number for ME. I just a citizen too, and know groups are scapegoated, targeted, and used for others agendas.

Updates

2017-03-14 08:49:26 -0400

10,000 signatures reached

2017-02-28 16:42:43 -0500

5,000 signatures reached

2017-02-28 13:51:06 -0500

1,000 signatures reached

2017-02-28 13:45:01 -0500

500 signatures reached

2017-02-28 13:38:46 -0500

100 signatures reached

2017-02-28 13:37:35 -0500

50 signatures reached

2017-02-26 11:48:38 -0500

25 signatures reached

2017-02-25 17:41:47 -0500

10 signatures reached