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Monday, April 30, 2012

Eddie Griffin Endorses Roy Charles Brooks, County Commission, Pct. 1

Laverne Brooks Dismally Short of Truth and Character

Eddie G. Griffin (BASG) wholeheartedly endorses incumbent Commissioner Roy C. Brooks for reelection to Precinct One, Tarrant County. Commissioner Brooks is a proven leader with many great works to show.

Roy Charles Brooks: An advocate for Children, Healthcare, and Education

In the area of prenatal care, Commission Brooks has championed the cause of reducing the high infant mortality rate in the county, by supporting health networks and expanding medical service providers to high risk Tarrant communities. One such healthcare center is named in honor of his father, the legendary Dr. Marion J. Brooks, a civil rights leader in the field of accessible medical care. Roy Charles shows the same level of compassion. 

He is a visionary in education, who recognizes that through education, youth can be afforded better opportunities in life. His creation of the Generation Hope Laptop Program shows innovative thinking in designing education support systems that helps bridge the digital divide, by putting laptops with internet access into the hands of some 400 students so far. These students are currently excelling in S.T.E.M. subjects and taking honors in national academic competitions. The program is wholly self-supported by public donations, with no cost to the county, city, state, and national government. 

Roy Charles Brooks also foresaw the merit of a reentry recovery and redemptive program that could salvage young lives and reduce the rate of recidivism among ex-offenders. Just as Generation Hope is a self-empowering youth development program that works as part of a system of preventative strategies to the School-to-Prison Pipeline, a successful Reentry Program for ex-offenders would help halt the revolving door in and out of prison. And, Reentry Employment assistance and job readiness training can them previously incarcerated persons become productive citizens. 

Eddie G. Griffin (BASG) was an original proponent of what has become the Tarrant County Reentry Initiative.

Laverne Brooks Disqualified by Character and Truth

At the African-American Democratic forum, challenger for Precinct One, Roy Laverne Brooks derided the Tarrant County Reentry program for not accomplishing what is supposed to accomplish. And, she further characterized the Commissioner’s Generation Hope Laptop Program, with its distribution of 400 laptops to disadvantaged students as “a drop in the bucket”.

After the forum, Eddie Griffin’s dialog with Ms. Laverne Brooks was as brisk as a forest fire on a windy day. She failed the trial by fire in character and in truth. She lied about non-extisting stagnate statistics on the county's reentry initiative.

The proof is engraved in history and speaks for itself below.

From the Eddie G. Griffin (BASG) files:
Letter to Commission Roy C. Brooks from Eddie Griffin:

On the Subject of Ex-Offender Reentry,
February 07, 2006


Dear Roy… since taking office, you have done a marvelous job… I get good field reports about your work and a few Roy Brooks’ quotable quotes from your constituency. You are highly prized as a man among men, and I am proud to be a servant under your leadership in our precinct… I saw firsthand your rapid response to the Katrina evacuation. Setting up the Katrina Store was a mark of genius. From that experience alone, I can see that you have gained tremendous insight into how to handle the issues of the poor. Your work on the homelessness situation is greatly appreciated and much needed. And, the ex-offender re-entry problem is an issue near and dear to me. 

[T]he National Alliance of Faith and Justice Re-Entry Roundtable was the most inspirational forum I’ve attended... we were given a wealth of information and a free CD to use in our fieldwork.

Successful re-entry is an attainable goal. It is something I talk to [Police] Chief Mendoza about, all the time. Of course, I have other issues, such as the overuse of incarceration for control of the crime problem, lack of good preventative strategies, criminalization of the mentally ill and retarded, over-prosecution of drug victims, continuing expanse of detention facilities and prisons, not to mention race relations. If we can stop the revolving door of recidivism, then we can reduce this mad mass exodus of millions of young people going into the prison system.

This makes me all the more interested in the Second Chance Bill, proposed in last session of the US Congress. I would like more information about it, who supported it, what provisions it contained, and why it failed.

I must make known my opposition to the new county jail. Frankly, I believe if you build it, they will come, which is bad. We build for a future based upon such a dismal expectation. We build for the unborn, who have done no sin and guilty of no crime. Yet, there is bed space for him before he reaches the age of 18, waiting for him ahead of time… The only benefactors of a new jail in Tarrant County would be the architects, engineers, and construction people that design and build it. It becomes redundant, to build more and more prisons and jails, to keep the construction industry going, and keep our kids longer and longer to fill them up, so they can build more jails and prisons. 

Building new jails and prisons make us weaker as a society. People will think that the only solution to every problem would be lock ‘em up and throw away the key.

March 22, 2006

“What we need in Tarrant County is people who are willing to state their point of view and face it. Eddie Griffin is doing that.” – Commission Roy C. Brooks, quoted in Fort Worth Weekly, Mean Streets to Peace 

Brooks has tapped Griffin to work on a proposed county program that will help inmates who get out of jail to integrate themselves better into the community.

“We need to craft a strategic plan for people coming back to our community from the criminal justice system,” Brooks said of the proposed Tarrant County Re-entry Council. “We need to identify gaps in the services. Eddie can help because his contacts across the country are quite vast. He is also so well read. But more than anyone else, he understands the folly of blaming things on people you have no control over. (ibid)

December 18, 2009
From:Eddie Griffin

Dear Commissioner Roy C. Brooks:

Let me express my sincere appreciation for your work on behalf of Tarrant County. I have had the pleasure of working on the ex-offender re-entry program since 2005… It appears that the Parolee Recidivism in Tarrant County is beginning to show a downward trend.

In Re-Arrest, there were 51.4% in 2005, the initial year of our Reentry Summit, and 41.3% in 2006. Likewise, Re-Conviction rate dropped from 36.4% in 2005 to 28.3% in 2006. And, Re-Incarceration fell from 34.7% in 2005 to 27.2% in 2006. 

NOTE: The Tarrant County Reentry Initiative became a model for other reentry programs around the state and across the nation, with many states now looking to Texas as an example of how to reduce the costliness of increasing prison populations, without incurring an increase risk factor in crime elevation.

Eddie G. Griffin and House Committee on Corrections State Rep. Jerry Madden

From: Eddie Griffin
Sent: Friday, January 19, 2007 5:01 PM
Subject: Proposed Legislation to Reform Texas Prison System

Dear Jerry,

Thank you for your continuing interest in the prison situation and for consideration of the young lives wasted through the cycle of crime and punishment.

The Tarrant County Re-entry Council is currently studying and working on these issues. Other organizations, such as the FWISD is playing a collaborative part in their dropout prevention initiatives. The FWPD is also playing a role in crime prevent among youth and gangs. In fact, our entire community is focused on solving these problems. We are also active in solving the problem of youth in the education system, why they are not making the grades, and why so many give up before graduation. As I have written before, we need a new education delivery system and more constructive ways to engage our youth. Technology education will help keep our kids engaged in the learning and discovery process, and maybe divert them away from illegal activity, or maybe attract them into a high tech field of interest.

Thanks again,
Eddie Griffin

Subject: Proposed Legislation to Reform Texas Prison System
Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2007 08:53:17 -0600
From: "District67 Madden", State Rep. Jerry Madden
To: "Eddie Griffin"


We hope committees will be announced this week and we can get to work. We are working hard on rewriting chapter 37 of the Education code dealing with Alternative Education Programs. We are also advocating a wonderful program called CARY in the schools and are working on putting it in the Appropriations so TEA can implement it. It will provide counseling for up to a year for kids sent to In School Suspension or the District Alternative Education programs. It is aimed at middle school and should be available to the FWISD when implemented. We are looking at a complete review of TDCJ and the TYC as part of our session. I also have HB277 which is the virtual school bill which would be a great assist for alternative education programs. That is part of our new and innovative delivery systems.

From Texas Youth Commission Reform Passes by Eddie G. Griffin (BASG)

In a May 26, 2007 email from Jerry Madden, House Corrections Committee Chairman, He writes:

There is nothing in the TYC Bill that builds any prisons. We do have in the Appropriations act that 2 facilities, Marlin and San Saba will be turned over to TDCJ and so will not be used for incarcerating youth. We also expect that there will be added closings of facilities by TYC probably 2 or 3 units. We do have in Appropriations money to build one new unit close to a metropolitan area so that we can keep youth closer to home. I think that is a good idea and we would not have to house them in old worn out facilities that in some cases may not be safe; We have a lot more money for integration and juvenile probation to try to keep youth from being sent to TYC...We also have all the funding we requested for our diversion beds which will have a major positive effect on our communities. While there is still more to do we have come a long way in a short time this session.

April 07, 2012

Reducing Mass Incarceration & Breaking the School-to-Prison Pipeline

declining crime rates, government budget cuts and increased use of treatment programs… have deflated a 20-year boom in building jails and prisons… writes Mike Ward of the American-Statesman, “having fewer people locked up should be good news for Texas taxpayers, as the associated costs of Lone Star justice go down”

But, he writes: The trend is drawing few cheers in Jones County and other places where taxes are going up to pay for the empty lockups.  

COMMENTARY by Eddie Griffin

Beginning in 2005, Tarrant County Commissioner Roy C. Brooks helped develop such a strategy with the help of about 300 community volunteers. The result was the creation of the county’s Reentry Initiative. Our success is reflected in these statistics for the state of Texas, as reflected in the above article:

More than 30,000 of the state's 93,000 county beds currently sit empty...

The counties and small Texas rural communities who anticipated an economic boon, and who invested heavily in new prison constructions, are now shedding tears over the lack in the number of new prisoners.  

In Littlefield, northwest of Lubbock, a $10 million, 373-bed prison has sat empty for two years — costing local taxpayers $65,000 a month to pay the outstanding loan.

More than 1,400 jail beds in Angelina, Newton and Dickens counties in East Texas stand vacant as well, and one in Jefferson County reopened only recently — at just a fraction of its former population.

In Falls County, about an hour's drive northeast of Austin, officials are scrambling to fill beds in a county-built private prison after the private company announced it was pulling out.

Outside Waco, an 833-bed, $49 million prison sits less than half full — the same problem faced by most of the privately operated county jail beds in the rest of the state, according to statistics from the Jail Standards Commission.

And, the dusty West Texas ranch town of Anson has a dubious new claim to fame for its Jail to Nowhere. Completed almost two years ago to house 1,100 state convicts who never arrived, the $35 million lockup sits empty at the edge of the town of about 2,300 people. Its promise of creating 195 jobs and a $5 million annual boost to the local economy is just a distant, and bitter, memory for most folks.

"The problem is, there just aren't enough prisoners to go around anymore," said House Corrections Committee Chairman Jerry Madden, R-Richardson.

“Idaho, Montana, many other states are facing this same issue,” Madden said. “They have empty jail beds they can't fill because there just aren't enough inmates out there… The state is not in a position to bail them out," he said. “Sad to say, but they made a business choice, and they're going to have to live with it at some point.”


The office of Commissioner Court is far above the realms of Ms. Laverne Brooks, a phony whose run depends solely upon name confusion, for no other qualification exists. Her combative and loose pontification on stage was a glaring disguise of her ignorance of facts and knowledge about the very programs she criticized, having no involvement and participation in their creation.

While we, in the community, put in thousands of hours of hard work, Ms. Laverne seems to be scrounging around in search of another seat in public office like a career politician. She cannot, however, represent Eddie G. Griffin (BASG).

The only honorable for her to do would be to withdraw from the race. But then that would require a dose of integrity, which I believe would be a little bit too much medicine for Ms. Roy Laverne to take.

VOTE FOR ROY CHARLES BROOKS for County Commissioner, Pct. 1

1 comment:

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