February 17, 2023
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Dream.Org is thrilled that a bipartisan group of Congressional leaders have re-introduced Eliminating a Quantifiably Unjust Application of the Law (EQUAL) Act - expressing their unwavering commitment to eliminating the disparity between powder and crack cocaine. This legislation would reverse a 1980s law that has torn families apart with unjust drug sentences, and bring 8,000 people home from prison sooner. We applaud the leadership of Senate Judiciary Chairman Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Ranking Member Lindsey Graham (R-SC), as well as Cory Booker (D-NJ), Representative Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) and Representative Kelly Armstrong (R-ND).
In the last session of Congress, the EQUAL Act passed out of the House, 361-66, with 143 Republicans (the vast majority of the caucus) voting in favor, and secured the sponsorship support of 11 Republican Senators – just falling short in the final days of Congress. Given this overwhelming bipartisan support, we are confident that the EQUAL Act can pass Congress this year.
Dream.Org worked tirelessly to pass this important legislation, bringing directly impacted leaders from throughout the country to Washington, D.C. to meet with their members of Congress, and we remain committed to EQUAL this year. “The introduction of the bipartisan EQUAL Act in this session of Congress reaffirms both Democrat and Republicans’ commitment to working together to create a criminal justice system that is both fair and just,” said Janos Marton, Justice National Director at Dream.Org. “This bill will reunite families and begin the process of restoring communities that have been decimated by the misguided and failed war on drugs.”
Additional cosponsors announced today include Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC), Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), Rand Paul (R-KY), Chris Coons (D-DE), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI). We thank them for their support and commitment to common ground solutions to make our criminal justice system fairer.
Dream.Org is a bipartisan effort to transform justice across the country. We bring together leaders impacted by the criminal justice system with unlikely allies spanning the political divide to push for criminal justice solutions.
Janos Marton, Justice National Director
Janos Marton is a born and raised New Yorker. He has spent his career fighting for racial justice and taking on corruption – as a civil rights lawyer, special counsel to the Moreland Commission to Investigate Corruption, and as attorney investigating police misconduct for the City of New York. In 2016 he was named the first advocacy director of JustLeadershipUSA, where he managed the historic #CLOSErikers campaign. Marton then ran criminal justice programs across the country for the ACLU. As a candidate for Manhattan District Attorney in 2020, Marton ran on a bold platform to use prison as a last resort, receiving praise for groundbreaking policies that became the gold standard in the race.