End the Death Penalty in Illinois

Illinois finds itself at a crossroads on the death penalty.

Executions have been on hold for a decade, leaving Illinois with a death penalty in name only. In these 10 years we’ve seen firsthand that our death penalty system can’t be repaired.

Despite our best efforts, Illinois’ death penalty still carries the risk of sentencing the innocent to death, fails to meet the real needs of murder victims’ families and is far more expensive than the alternative of life without parole. New legislation — SB 3539 — soon will be introduced to repeal the death penalty and re-allocate the funding for the death penalty toward assistance to law enforcement and services for murder victims’ families.

Read this important Jewish perspective on this issue by Rabbi Brad Hirschfield:

“Ultimately, Jewish tradition values the idea of the death penalty as a moral statement, but hates its imposition on ethical grounds. Interestingly, that is where it seems many Americans stand when it comes to the issue as well. Perhaps now is the time to go back to the future when it comes to thinking about the death penalty.” (Read the full article here.)

Your Help is Needed

The bill  is headed to the Illinois House  in January. We need your help to get the repeal of the death penalty passed. Here’s what you can do:

1. Please call your legislators today to ask them to support SB3539 to repeal the death penalty. To find your legislator, click here.

This is what you can tell them:

“I’m a constituent and I’m calling to urge you to support SB3539.”

2. Join the Illinois Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty for bus trip to Springfield on Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2011 (learn more).

Questions About the Death Penalty in Illinois?

Read the fact sheet or contact Michaela Purdue at Michaela@jcua.org.

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