Restorative Community Coalition
Working with citizens in need in our community.

(formerly: ReEntry Coalition of Whatcom County)


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ReVise and RightSize!

I'm a parent, coach, business woman, President of WC ReEntry Coalition. Our jail situation is where complex local, state and national problems directly confront public safety, social responsibility, quality of life and your money.

Technology, red tape, costs of living are accelerating. Employees are overworked; unemployment rises. We've undermined our small business foundation. Taxpayers are stretched, stressed, foreclosed, bankrupt.

Who pays the $30,000/yr bill for one inmate? It takes twelve $24,000/yr. wage earners.

In 2009 1-in-26 people were imprisoned, on probation or on parole. It's a systemic self-destructive cycle. When cutbacks take out social services, rehab and reentry programs, recidivism increases. Read 'Race to Incarcerate' and 'Restorative Justice'.

Let's reverse the cycle:
1. Fund a 'right-sized' jail. Solve the immediate problem.

2. ASAP stop losses, save money. Redirect non-violent offenders into lower cost, higher ROI restorative justice models. Unite private, public and non-profit organizations to address the REAL problem: 80% of our jail inmates are illiterate, mentally ill, addicted. Jail, fines, court time doesn't work. What does is recovery and rehabilitation, functional literacy, life and job re-skilling. Restore productive citizens.

3. ReVise! Let's innovate and build a community enterprise center to pioneer, mentor, train, build self-reliance. Let's use collaborative teamwork as we right-size our community! Bellingham is one of ten "happiest cities", we lead in green business, we're 2nd for supporting indie entrepreneurs. Let's restore honor, build a bridge to the future by discovering and funding innovative initiatives that are regenerative and life-enhancing. We can do this.

-- Joy Gilfilen