Second Chance Month, 2021, 17689-17690 [2021-07179]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 64 / Tuesday, April 6, 2021 / Presidential Documents 17689 Presidential Documents Proclamation 10171 of March 31, 2021 Second Chance Month, 2021 By the President of the United States of America A Proclamation America’s criminal justice system must offer meaningful opportunities for redemption and rehabilitation. After incarcerated individuals serve their time, they should have the opportunity to fully reintegrate into society. It benefits not just those individuals but all of society, and it is the best strategy to reduce recidivism. During Second Chance Month, we lift up all those who, having made mistakes, are committed to rejoining society and making meaningful contributions. My Administration is committed to a holistic approach to building safe and healthy communities. This includes preventing crime and providing opportunities for all Americans. It also requires rethinking the existing criminal justice system—whom we send to prison and for how long; how people are treated while incarcerated; how prepared they are to reenter society once they have served their time; and the racial inequities that lead to the disproportionate number of incarcerated Black and Brown people. We must commit to second chances from the earliest stages of our criminal justice system. Supporting second chances means, for example, diverting individuals who have used illegal drugs to drug court programs and treatment instead of prison. It requires eliminating exceedingly long sentences and mandatory minimums that keep people incarcerated longer than they should be. It means providing quality job training and educational opportunities during incarceration to prepare individuals for the 21st century economy. And it means reinvesting the savings from reduced incarceration into reentry programs and social services that prevent recidivism and leave us all better off. More than 600,000 individuals return to their communities from State and Federal prisons every year. Transitioning back into society can be overwhelming for those who are formerly incarcerated as well as their families and communities. Too many individuals face unfair legal and practical barriers to reentry. The reentry process is complicated in the best of times, and is even more so with the additional difficulties presented by the COVID– 19 pandemic. khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with PRESDOC7 We must remove these barriers. Every person leaving incarceration should have housing, the opportunity at a decent job, and health care. A person’s conviction history should not unfairly exclude them from employment, occupational licenses, access to credit, public benefits, or the right to vote. Certain criminal records should be expunged and sealed so people can overcome their past. By focusing on prevention, reentry, and social support, rather than incarceration, we can ensure that America is a land of second chances and opportunity for all people. NOW, THEREFORE, I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim April 2021 as Second Chance Month. I call upon all government officials, educators, volunteers, VerDate Sep<11>2014 15:57 Apr 05, 2021 Jkt 253250 PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\06APD6.SGM 06APD6 17690 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 64 / Tuesday, April 6, 2021 / Presidential Documents and all the people of the United States to observe this day with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities. IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirty-first day of March, in the year of our Lord two thousand twenty-one, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fortyfifth. [FR Doc. 2021–07179 Filed 4–5–21; 8:45 am] VerDate Sep<11>2014 15:57 Apr 05, 2021 Jkt 253250 PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\06APD6.SGM 06APD6 BIDEN.EPS</GPH> khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with PRESDOC7 Billing code 3295–F1–P

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 64 (Tuesday, April 6, 2021)]
[Presidential Documents]
[Pages 17689-17690]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-07179]




                        Presidential Documents 



Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 64 / Tuesday, April 6, 2021 / 
Presidential Documents

[[Page 17689]]


                Proclamation 10171 of March 31, 2021

                
Second Chance Month, 2021

                By the President of the United States of America

                A Proclamation

                America's criminal justice system must offer meaningful 
                opportunities for redemption and rehabilitation. After 
                incarcerated individuals serve their time, they should 
                have the opportunity to fully reintegrate into society. 
                It benefits not just those individuals but all of 
                society, and it is the best strategy to reduce 
                recidivism. During Second Chance Month, we lift up all 
                those who, having made mistakes, are committed to 
                rejoining society and making meaningful contributions.

                My Administration is committed to a holistic approach 
                to building safe and healthy communities. This includes 
                preventing crime and providing opportunities for all 
                Americans. It also requires rethinking the existing 
                criminal justice system--whom we send to prison and for 
                how long; how people are treated while incarcerated; 
                how prepared they are to reenter society once they have 
                served their time; and the racial inequities that lead 
                to the disproportionate number of incarcerated Black 
                and Brown people.

                We must commit to second chances from the earliest 
                stages of our criminal justice system. Supporting 
                second chances means, for example, diverting 
                individuals who have used illegal drugs to drug court 
                programs and treatment instead of prison. It requires 
                eliminating exceedingly long sentences and mandatory 
                minimums that keep people incarcerated longer than they 
                should be. It means providing quality job training and 
                educational opportunities during incarceration to 
                prepare individuals for the 21st century economy. And 
                it means reinvesting the savings from reduced 
                incarceration into reentry programs and social services 
                that prevent recidivism and leave us all better off.

                More than 600,000 individuals return to their 
                communities from State and Federal prisons every year. 
                Transitioning back into society can be overwhelming for 
                those who are formerly incarcerated as well as their 
                families and communities. Too many individuals face 
                unfair legal and practical barriers to reentry. The 
                reentry process is complicated in the best of times, 
                and is even more so with the additional difficulties 
                presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.

                We must remove these barriers. Every person leaving 
                incarceration should have housing, the opportunity at a 
                decent job, and health care. A person's conviction 
                history should not unfairly exclude them from 
                employment, occupational licenses, access to credit, 
                public benefits, or the right to vote. Certain criminal 
                records should be expunged and sealed so people can 
                overcome their past.

                By focusing on prevention, reentry, and social support, 
                rather than incarceration, we can ensure that America 
                is a land of second chances and opportunity for all 
                people.

                NOW, THEREFORE, I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of 
                the United States of America, by virtue of the 
                authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws 
                of the United States, do hereby proclaim April 2021 as 
                Second Chance Month. I call upon all government 
                officials, educators, volunteers,

[[Page 17690]]

                and all the people of the United States to observe this 
                day with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and 
                activities.

                IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this 
                thirty-first day of March, in the year of our Lord two 
                thousand twenty-one, and of the Independence of the 
                United States of America the two hundred and forty-
                fifth.
                
                
                    (Presidential Sig.)

[FR Doc. 2021-07179
Filed 4-5-21; 8:45 am]
Billing code 3295-F1-P