According to an ongoing report by The Associated Press and The Marshall Project, Wisconsin is among the states with the highest total number of coronavirus cases in its prison system. However, in its October draft report to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Wisconsin failed to release its plan detailing when the vaccine is planned to be distributed to prisoners. After the first wave of vaccinations, Wisconsin is still deciding on the shot priority list. Families of inmates and those in the prison system are begging state officials to consider the high transmission risk prisoners face, and to recognize the havoc that the virus has wreaked on Wisconsin prisoners thus far.
The Badger Institute has conducted a survey of Wisconsin police departments’ processes used when disciplinary actions against police offers are issued. The survey most intensely focuses on Madison and Milwaukee police departments, with findings that transparency at Madison police departments regarding police discipline processes very much surpasses the transparency at Milwaukee police departments. There is also much work to be done regarding police departments’ transparency across the entire state.
Regarding the disciplinary processes statewide and the highlighted deficiencies in Milwaukee police departments’ disciplinary transparency, many solutions are offered in the Badger Institute’s report titled, “How to Make Police Discipline Fair, Quick, Transparent and Decisive”. Solutions offered include extending Act 10 to police, extending probationary periods, eliminating arbitration and ensuring details of police misconduct are accessible to citizens across the state.
The UW Law School’s LAIP (Law School’s Legal Assistance to Institutionalized Persons) program is one of the few programs in the nation that allows advocates for compassionate release of incarcerated people with terminal illness to prevent them from dying alone behind bars. This program re-examines an incarcerated person’s case once they are diagnosed with a terminal illness to ensure that the punishment still fits the crime. This initiative hits home for our firm as Attorney Payal Khandhar was a proud participant of the program during law school.