On November 4, people across the state went to the polls to elect Pennsylvania's next Governor. Incumbent Republican Governor Tom Corbett was defeated by Democratic candidate Tom Wolf. Corbett’s defeat was a referendum on his failed policies. During his time as Governor, Corbett spent $685 million to expand Pennsylvania's prison system and has failed to deliver meaningful reform to bring people home from prison. sentencing reform. Corbett has cut massive amounts of funding from public education and public services. He has cut General Assistance, put forward an inadequate Medicaid proposal, and advanced failed policies that harm young people, workers, incarcerated people, and people living with HIV and AIDS.
So far, Wolf has had little to say regarding how he plans to address mass incarceration in Pennsylvania. There are currently over 51,000 people incarcerated in the state prison system, and communities across the state have been devastated by the broader impacts of mass incarceration. Wolf needs to tell the public what, if anything, he would do to stop prison expansion and bring people home.
Decarcerate PA has been working throughout the year to insure that mass incarceration is an issue that all candidates feel pressured to address. On October 1, both Corbett and Wolf were in Philadelphia for a live radio debate at the KYW Studios. On the morning of the debate, Decarcerate PA joined with our allies from the Philadelphia Coalition Advocating for Public Schools, the AIDS Coalition To Unleash Power (ACT UP), Fight for Philly, the Philly Student Union, and Philadelphians Organized to Witness, Empower, and Rebuild (POWER), for a rally and interfaith prayer vigil outside the KYW studios. We sent a clear message to the candidates and the news media that we want a governor who will invest in community needs, not prisons.
As Wolf prepares to take office, Decarcerate PA will continue to keep the pressure on him to take action against mass incarceration in Pennsylvania. See more at http://decarceratepa.info/whereswolf