BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Hundreds of criminal justice advocates were at the Louisiana capitol Tuesday for Louisianans for Prison Alternatives' (LPA) lobby day. An outdoor rally was held at A.Z. Young Park.
LPA is fighting to protect criminal justice legislation passed in 2017 from being rolled back. Several state representatives joined in the rally, including Rep. Ted James, Sen. Wesley Bishop, and Rep. Pat Smith, to name a few. Policy advisor, Leslie Ricard Chambers, from Governor John Bel Edwards' office, was also in attendance.
"We got a lot done last year and primarily it was from the support of people like you who come in here and show up and testify. We have a lot of work left to do. And we need to make sure that the reforms and changes that we made that are good for Louisiana continue and we go forward," said Rep. Joe Marino.
"Fighting for prison reform and justice in Louisiana is going to be my legacy until I die," said Smith.
"It is very easy to fight when you're fighting for the right things. We know that today and this session is about fighting against all of the rollbacks from all of the positive work that we did," said James.
Several pieces of legislation this session would repeal some reforms passed in 2017. One of the bills in question, HB 195, is scheduled for debate on the House floor on Wednesday, March 28.
Video from the rally can be watched on LPA's Facebook page here.