On Thursday, May 13, the House Judiciary Committee held a hearing on House Bill 346, which would establish a process for restoring justice to people still serving time due to unconstitutional non-unanimous jury verdicts.
More than 1,500 people in Louisiana are still imprisoned due to Jim Crow juries, which were devised by white supremacists and ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.
“This hearing is an important step toward restoring justice to the people still imprisoned by this racist and unconstitutional practice,” said Jamila Johnson, managing attorney for The Promise of Justice Initiative (PJI)'s Jim Crow Juries Project.
“Louisiana voters repudiated Jim Crow juries in 2018, but more than 1,500 people remain imprisoned – separated from their families and communities – by this racist and unconstitutional practice. We don’t know what the Supreme Court will decide, but we do know this: Louisiana lawmakers have the power to address this injustice now, without waiting on Washington to dictate the solution for us. This is a chance for lawmakers to pass a common-sense Louisiana solution for a long-running injustice that’s inflicted terrible harm on families and communities,” Johnson added.