After 15 years, 8 prison inmates bid farewell to their cellmates. The men and women were convicted of non-violent crack cocaine offenses and 6 were sentenced to life under an unfair law system that President Obama readjusted three years ago.
“If they had been sentenced under the current law, many of them would have already served their time and paid their debt to society.” The Presideent declared,”because of a disparity in the law that is now recognized as unjust, they remain in prison, separated from their families and their communities, at a cost of millions of taxpayer dollars each year.”
The Fair Sentencing Act of 2011 reduced the disparity for penalties in crack and powder related crimes which aided in the adjustment of jail time many minorities were facing.
President Obama stated, ”Commuting the sentences of these eight Americans is an important step towards restoring fundamental ideals of justice and fairness. But it must not be the last. Together, we must ensure that our taxpayer dollars are spent wisely, and that our justice system keeps its basic promise of equal treatment for all.”
Many of these offenders were young at the time of their sentencing which was ruled non-violent and gained massive media attention during their trials.