SPRINGFIELD – Following Monday’s vote on Prisoner Review Board nominee Eleanor Wilson, State Senator Cristina Pacione-Zayas released this statement:

“Eleanor Wilson has 40 years of experience and expertise and was thoroughly vetted. I question why this was overlooked in favor of multiple claims taking her record out of context in incendiary fashion. Broad generalizations were made about her record in a job that exists precisely because good public policy in this sphere demands that experts evaluate particular individual circumstances; because we all acknowledge that a broad brush approach leads to injustice. Unfortunately, I fear such an approach was taken with this nominee.

“The Prisoner Review Board is tasked with looking at the full picture of individuals who have been imprisoned for decades for crimes they committed when they were much younger to determine whether a person is prepared for release. Since Illinois does not offer parole to incarcerated individuals, the Board's role is vital to ensuring our justice system focuses on rehabilitation and safe reentry into society. Having acknowledged the abject failure of prior approaches, Illinois has committed itself to a restorative, healing-centered, rehabilitative approach to justice. If we are to truly honor that commitment then we need to honor and value the lived experience and rehabilitative expertise of those nominees who come before us.

“I urge the governor to put forth additional names so we can fill the positions as quickly as possible to ensure the board continues to operate as necessary.”

Category: Press Releases

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