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AMY SCHUMER, STEPHEN CURRY, ED NORTON, RUSSELL SIMMONS, SHONDA RHIMES, 90+ CELEBS JOIN 130,000 AMERICANS DEMANDING CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM IN 2015
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 5, 2015

Contact:
Alex Gudich, 415-240-2016, [email protected]
Molly Haigh, 907-750-1999, [email protected]
Michele Setteducato, 732-614-3818, [email protected]

Amy Schumer, Stephen Curry, Ed Norton,
Russell Simmons, Shonda Rhimes, 90+ Celebs Join 130,000 Americans
Demanding Criminal Justice Reform in 2015

Washington, DC – Amy Schumer, Steph Curry, Ed Norton, Jesse Williams, Chris Pine, Russell Simmons, and Piper Kerman are among 90+ celebrities calling calling for reform to our criminal justice system — a call sounded by #cut50, a bipartisan effort to safely and smartly reduce our incarcerated population by 50 percent over the next 10 years.

The historic campaign comes on the heels of major bipartisan legislation in Congress. Last week, an all-star group of Senators including Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Cory Booker (D-NJ) came together to begin rolling back mass incarceration with the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act. In the House, the SAFE Justice Act has been called the most comprehensive justice reform legislation in decades.

President Obama said late last week that he was “optimistic that members on both sides of the aisle, in both houses… can put a meaningful criminal justice reform bill on my desk before the end of this year.”

For the first time, major celebrities are petitioning Congress to pass a meaningful criminal justice reform bill and roll back the incarceration industry in America.

Poll after poll shows that the majority of American people, of all political persuasions, agree – it is time to fix our broken justice system.

The #JusticeReformNOW petition, organized by #cut50, has received more than 130,000 total signatures collected across multiple petitions hosted on Care2, Credo Working Assets, MoveOn & a recently launched petition at Change.org/JusticeReformNOW – all petitions call for a comprehensive, criminal justice reform bill this year.

Now, leading public figures are voicing their support.

“The moment to pass a meaningful bill is now — before the 2016 elections complicate any bipartisan efforts,” said Van Jones, co-founder of #cut50, which is an initiative of the Dream Corps.

“Like many of the artists and entertainers speaking out on this issue today, I have seen the terrible failure of the War on Drugs firsthand, especially in communities of color.  It is time that Republicans and Democrats work together in Washington to fix this broken system. Their leadership must inspire states across the country to take action, so we can end mass incarceration, once and for all.” – Russell Simmons, CEO of Rush Communications

“Lives won’t change until laws change. There are too many Americans immobilized behind bars for no good public safety reason – not able to be with their families or contribute to their communities,” said Piper Kerman, author of Orange is the New Black: My Year in a Women’s Prison.  “People deserve a second chance, so they can fulfill their potential and take care of their responsibilities.  It’s essential that we take the necessary policy steps to make this possible.”

“In the past 8 years working in the criminal justice system I have come to realize that we spend way too much money incarcerating non-violent offenders. We can and must do better as a society and a nation.” – Tim Robbins, Actor, Director and Activist

“Many of us, especially in the hip-hop community, have long used music and art to raise awareness and understanding about the ways in which our communities have been failed by the criminal justice system.  With 2.4 million people incarcerated in America, and a real opportunity for change, we’re ready to to turn up the volume.  Whatever we can do to use our respective voices and platforms to demand justice reform, we are prepared to do that.” – Angie Martinez, Multi-media personality and Power 105 radio host.

“The devastating and undeniable fact is, the American prison industry locks up too many people, unnecessarily and for too long. Every year, we waste an astonishing amount of public and human resources while ruining countless lives and devastating communities. It’s time to rethink our approach: It’s time for justice reform, now.”  – Jesse Williams, star of ABC’s hit series Grey’s Anatomy, Board Member for the Advancement Project and Executive Producer of Question Bridge

#cut50 has declared Monday, October 5th, a national “day of action” for criminal justice reform. Celebrities, political leaders, concerned Americans and cultural leaders will be taking to social media to spotlight both parties’ opportunity to take legislative action now.

“Our broken criminal justice system harms more than it helps and wastes $80 billion a year. Americans are ready to fix it. Now it’s up to the national leaders in both parties to answer this call by passing strong federal legislation,” said Van Jones.

#cut50 believes urgent action is needed to pass meaningful legislation through Congress and give President Obama a bill to sign before the end of the year.

The current roster of celebrity signers is below:

  1. Adrian Grenier
  2. Affion Crockett
  3. Alfre Woodard
  4. Alicia Silverstone
  5. Amy Schumer
  6. Angie Martinez
  7. Annalynne McCord
  8. Arsenio Hall
  9. Ashley Judd
  10. Audra McDonald
  11. Boris Kodjoe
  12. Brendon Ayanbadejo
  13. Carrie Keagan
  14. Cedric The Entertainer
  15. Charlamagne
  16. Chloe Flowers
  17. Chris Pine
  18. Chris Kluwe
  19. Christy Turlington
  20. Debbie Allen
  21. Deepak Chopra
  22. DL Hughley
  23. Dule Hill
  24. Edward Norton
  25. Eliza Dushku
  26. Emily Deschanel
  27. Gabourey Sidibe
  28. George Lopez
  29. Gina Prince Bythewood
  30. Hill Harper
  31. Jesse Williams
  32. Jessica Chastain
  33. Jill Scott
  34. Joakim Noah
  35. Joe Rogan
  36. John Forte
  37. Judd Apatow
  38. Julianne Moore
  39. Juliette Lewis
  40. Jussie Smollet
  41. Kelly Slater
  42. Kenny Hamilton
  43. Kenny Smith
  44. Laverne Cox
  45. Luis Guzman
  46. Malik Yoba
  47. Margaret Cho
  48. Mark Ruffalo
  49. Marlon Wayans
  50. Matt McGorry
  51. Maxwell
  52. Melanie Fiona
  53. Michael Beaden
  54. Michael Ealy
  55. Michael K Williams
  56. Michael Sam
  57. Michael Skolnik*
  58. Michelle Williams
  59. Mike Epps
  60. Moby
  61. Morgan Spurlock
  62. Nick Cannon
  63. Nipsey Hussle
  64. Norman Lear
  65. Octavia Spencer
  66. Omar Epps
  67. Quincy Jones
  68. Raegan Gomez
  69. Reggie Bush
  70. Richard Branson
  71. Rick Warren
  72. Ricki Lake
  73. Rosie O’Donnell
  74. Russell Brand
  75. Russell Peters
  76. Russell Simmons
  77. Samantha Ronson
  78. Sanaa Lathan
  79. Sean “Diddy” Combs
  80. Selita Ebanks
  81. Shepard Fairey
  82. Shonda Rhimes
  83. Stacy Barthe
  84. Steph Curry
  85. Susan Sarandon
  86. Tamar Braxton
  87. Taryn Manning
  88. Tatyana Ali
  89. Tim Robbins
  90. Tonya Pinkins
  91. Tyrese Gibson
  92. Van Jones
  93. Vivica Fox
  94. Wayne Brady
  95. Will.I.Am
  96. Zac Posen

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#cut50 is an initiative of the Dream Corps. #cut50 works across party lines to safely and smartly reduce America’s incarcerated population by 50 percent over the next 10 years.