TCJC In the News

Press Contact: For all media inquiries, please contact Madison Kaigh, Communications Manager, at or (512) 441-8123, ext. 108.


Why Latinos Are Leading the Charge to End the Drug War

October 5, 2015

Each year, the United States observes National Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 to October 15. The Drug Policy Alliance (DPA) is celebrating the month this year by launching Somos DPA, an online tribute that recognizes the “significant and far-reaching” contributions of Latino drug-policy reformers to end the war on drugs.

Read the rest of this article at PanamPost.

Lawmaker Mulling Hearing on Juvenile Justice

October 2, 2015

State Sen. John Whitmire might call a hearing and seek leadership changes at the Texas Juvenile Justice Department after multiple reports of youths fighting, climbing onto rooftops and running away from staff in large numbers at youth correctional facilities.

Read the rest of this article at The Texas Tribune.

Whole Foods' decision to stop using prison labor is a step in the wrong direction

October 2, 2015

Fellow foodies, here’s a question for your conscience: Do you wonder whose hands helped bring your meal to the grocery?

Read the rest of the article at the Kansas City Star.

Abbott Doles Out $133M for Law Enforcement, Crime Victims

October 2, 2015

Gov. Greg Abbott's criminal justice division is doling out $133 million in grants to local law enforcement agencies and victims' assistance programs across seven Texas regions, he announced Friday.

Read the rest of this article at The Texas Tribune.

Texas Tribune event tackles future of criminal justice

October 2, 2015

In an effort to give people a perspective of what the future holds, the Texas Tribune is hosting a series of public events across the state that where lawmakers and analysts will cover eight major policy areas such as criminal justice, energy, the environment, health, higher and public education, immigration and transportation.

Read the rest of this article at The Item.

The Texas Criminal Justice Coalition Welcomes New Executive Director, Leah Pinney

October 1, 2015

Effective today, the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition announces Leah Pinney as Executive Director.  The organization’s previous Executive Director, Dr. Ana Yáñez-Correa, will be leading the Criminal Justice program at the Washington, DC-based Public Welfare Foundation.

Expanding Harris County’s successful drug diversion program will further improve public safety outcomes and save taxpayer dollars

September 30, 2015

In October 2014, Harris County District Attorney Devon Anderson partnered with local law enforcement to establish the First Chance Intervention Program, a rehabilitative diversion program for individuals with first-time, Class B misdemeanor marijuana possession offenses.

Read the rest of this article at the Houston Chronicle.

Panel To Explore Future Of Criminal Justice In Texas

September 30, 2015

A recent report by the State of Texas Legislative Budget Board projects that incarceration rates for adults and the juvenile population will “remain stable” through the year 2020, with residential populations expected to remain at or below capacity.

Read the rest of this artilce at Kstar.

Jenkins, Neill: Harris County should stop jailing small-time drug offenders

September 29, 2015

Drug policy in the U.S. is changing. After more than 40 years of a War on Drugs that did little to curb supply or demand of illegal highs, jurisdictions across the nation are reconsidering their approach to drugs and drug users, with special emphasis on finding alternatives to incarceration.

Read the rest of this article at the Houston Chronicle.

New Report: Expanding Harris County’s Successful Drug Diversion Program Will Further Improve Public Safety Outcomes & Save Taxpayer Dollars

September 28, 2015

In October 2014, the Harris County District Attorney established the First Chance Intervention Program. Today, the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition and Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy released a report examining the program and the potential benefits that would come with expanding it.

UT study finds longer incarceration for girls, but why remains unclear

September 27, 2015

When Erin Espinosa was a probation officer in Texas, she often found herself between a rock and a hard place when she had to decide whether to keep a girl detained after committing a crime or return her on probation to a troubled home.

Read the rest of this article at myStatesman.

Texas Still Has Largest U.S. Prison Population; Decline Topped National Average

September 25, 2015

The 1.3 percent decline in Texas’ prison population last year was slightly higher than the national drop of one percent, says the Texas Tribune.

Read the rest of this article at The Crime Report.

Dip in Texas Prison Population Continues Trend

September 25, 2015

The number of men and women being held in Texas prisons fell by more than one percent in 2014, a slight dip that continues a downward trend aided by new diversion programs and a reluctance by state lawmakers to add more prison beds.

Read the rest of this article at The Texas Tribune.

Can Skype-Like Video Chats Replace In-Person Jail Visits?

September 23, 2015

In Texas, jails in Travis and Bastrop counties have completely done away with in-person inmate visits, but it has led some to question the legality of the cost-cutting measure.

Read the rest of this article at Government Technology.

Girls Incarcerated Longer for Less Serious Offenses, Texas Study Shows

September 22, 2015

Girls serve longer sentences than boys in the Texas juvenile justice system, and for less serious offenses, according to a new study from the University of Texas at Austin.

Read the rest of this article at Juvenile Justice Information Exchange.

From the Fields of Delano to the Halls of Congress: Latinas Leading the Charge for Justice

September 17, 2015

A half-century ago this week, Dolores Huerta and the United Farm Workers voted to join Larry Itliong and Filipino farmworkers’ in commencing the Delano Grape Strike.

Read the rest of this article at the Drug Policy Alliance.

The Death Of Victoria Gray: How Texas Jails Are Failing Their Most Vulnerable Captives

September 15, 2015

If a reporter asks John Gray to do an in-person interview, he insists that the backdrop is the same: The Brazoria County Jail, in Angleton, Texas, just south of Houston.

Read the rest of this article at ThinkProgess.

Haven for trafficking victims planned for Bastrop County

September 14, 2015

Brooke Crowder found her calling in graduate school when she saw a video of young girls being pulled out of a hole in the floor of a brothel in India. 

Read the rest of this article at myStatesman.

CNHI: Stealing more costs less under change to property laws

September 9, 2015

AUSTIN - Stealing is still a crime in Texas, but as of Sept. 1, you may be able to steal more and pay less if you’re caught.

Read the rest of this article at the Corsicana Daily Sun.

Relaxed Food Stamp Rules Meant to Help Felons

August 30, 2015

Starting Sept. 1, a new Texas law will allow people with felony drug convictions to qualify for food assistance, ending the lifetime ban they currently face. Supporters hope the change will reduce recidivism as it helps felons get back on their feet. 

Read the rest of the article at The Texas Tribune.