(Albany, NY) - State Senator Gustavo Rivera released the following statement today after bill S1474, also known as the Proximity Bill, passed the New York State Senate Crime Victims, Crime and Correction Committee. The Proximity bill, which is sponsored by Senator Rivera in the Senate and Assemblymember Marcos Crespo in the Assembly, will establish a pilot project to place incarcerated individuals in facilities that are close to their home and their families. The bill has now been referred to the Senate Finance Committee.
"I am proud that my colleagues in the Senate Crime Victims, Crime and Correction Committee have joined me in pushing the Proximity bill towards the next step of the legislative process. The implementation of this pilot program will effectively reaffirm the notion that our criminal justice system should not just focus on punishment, but also on rehabilitation. Placing incarcerated parents in facilities that are close to their children will help preserve their fundamental relationship. This pilot program does not only give the State the opportunity to be an active agent in ensuring the emotional and psychological welfare of these families, but also the ability to study the benefits of such a program, including its impact on decreasing rates of recidivism. If we are truly committed in reforming our State's criminal justice system, this transformative pilot program could represent an auspicious step. I urge my colleagues at the Senate Finance Committee to review and bring this bill to a vote. I will continue working with my colleagues in the Assembly and the Senate to ensure that this measure passes through both houses."