Criminal Justice Task Force Will Submit Final Report Friday
Members of the governor’s criminal justice task force will recommend cultural changes at the Oklahoma Department of Corrections on Friday.
The Criminal Justice Reentry, Supervision, Treatment and Opportunity Reform (RESTORE) task force held their final meeting Monday, ahead of the January 10, 2020 deadline.
The executive order signed by Gov. Kevin Stitt in May 2019, called for the task force to “study, evaluate, and make recommendations regarding policies, programs and proposed legislation."
However, task force chairwoman Tricia Everest said the group will not make any legislative recommendations.
“Although we were tasked, in part, to consider what recommendations we would have, we would like to continue on with this work,” Everest said. “It’s not a simple fix. It’s more of a change of priorities and resources.”
Oklahoma Secretary of Public Safety Chip Keating said the task force will recommend the Oklahoma Department of Corrections add a chief cultural officer.
“This early push has been in to looking at where is the low hanging fruit, where we can make some real big differences and I think a lot of what we are going to be able to do, we are going to be able to do right away,” Keating said.
“If you look at the commutation that happened in November, which was the largest in the world, we had these transition fairs,” Everest said. “So we go in the prison, and we can have transition fairs that are happening now on a regular basis.”
She said the committee of lawmakers, law enforcers, mental health and victims’ advocates will continue meeting.
The full list of recommendations is expected to be released Friday.