A bill introduced by Sf Assemblyman Tom Ammiano will require the Department of Corrections to permit representatives of the news media to interview prisoners in person. The bill forbids retaliation against inmates for participating in or communicating with a representative of the news media. Governor's Pete Wilson, Gray Davis and Arnold Schwarzenegger have all vetoed similar bills over the past decade. The current governor Jerry Brown has not stated publicly what he will do if the Legislature passes the bill.
SB/AB1270 which overturns the 1996 prison media ban passed the Senate Public Safety Committee on June 12th after a lobbying blitz by Legal Services for Prisoners with Children, Curb Prison Spending, the LA Youth Justice Coalition, Media Alliance and many more. On to the full Senate.
Tell Governor Jerry Brown to do better than his three predecessors and sign this bill if it gets to his desk. Retaliation and arbitrary restrictions on media access hurt prisoners and hurt the people's right to know about the institutions they pay for with their tax dollars.