Letter from the Director

Hello, and welcome to our website!

I’m Leah Pinney, the Executive Director of the Texas Center for Justice and Equity (TCJE) – formerly known as the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition. We’re a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization headquartered in Austin, Texas, with staff in major counties throughout the state. We also support the work of system-impacted leaders across Texas.

In our advocacy at the State Capitol and on the ground in Texas cities, we are proud to partner with community members, fellow advocates, academics, service providers, and many others to transform justice. We are intent on ending mass incarceration: by reorienting the state’s criminal legal system toward prevention, healing, and redemption; by stemming further growth in an already bloated and ineffective system; and by fighting for investments in community-based supports that exist outside of the system. We want all Texans to feel safe, have hope, and succeed, and it takes each of us to make that vision possible.

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Hello, and welcome to our website!

I’m Leah Pinney, the Executive Director of the Texas Center for Justice and Equity (TCJE) – formerly known as the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition. We’re a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization headquartered in Austin, Texas, with staff in major counties throughout the state. We also support the work of system-impacted leaders across Texas.

In our advocacy at the State Capitol and on the ground in Texas cities, we are proud to partner with community members, fellow advocates, academics, service providers, and many others to transform justice. We are intent on ending mass incarceration: by reorienting the state’s criminal legal system toward prevention, healing, and redemption; by stemming further growth in an already bloated and ineffective system; and by fighting for investments in community-based supports that exist outside of the system. We want all Texans to feel safe, have hope, and succeed, and it takes each of us to make that vision possible.

This is a Texas-sized undertaking, and we’ve been at it for more than 20 years – doing the work to move the needle on reform. We conduct research and data analysis, produce reports and fact sheets, share stories of system impact, craft proposals for reform, and engage in education with decision-makers.

Over time, we’ve seen more people safely diverted from prisons and jails. We’ve seen the state’s youth and adult prison populations fall, and prison facilities close. We’ve seen meaningful investments in local programs that help people address their needs and get back on their feet.

We do know that we still have far to go. Texas remains a leading incarcerator, disproportionately locking up people of color, criminalizing mental health and substance use disorders, and disrupting families – all with a multi-billion-dollar price tag.

But more Texans than ever before are pitching in to help right these wrongs, and we’re grateful to you for supporting our fight for a better Texas. I hope this website will provide the information you need as you join us in making a difference!

  • If you’re looking for ways to get more involved, check out our supporter hub to learn how to partner with us locally or at the State Capitol. And take a look at our system-impacted coalitions to see if you’d like to participate!
  • Are you interested in reading more about justice policy areas and our recommendations for reform? Check out our searchable library of reports, fact sheets, and infographics.
  • If you’d like the specifics about how we’re fighting for better outcomes for all Texans, you can dig into our state policy areas and our work on the ground in Texas counties.
  • Want to see what our team feels about rising issues? Check out our blog or find quotes from our staff on our news page.
  • Lastly, sign up to receive our monthly e-updates to keep up to date on our work, important reports and events, and other key news.

Thank you for your interest in TCJE. Together, we can create a brighter future for Texas!

Warmly,
Leah

P.S. If you’d like to invest in our team and this work, please make a contribution here! We’re a small team with a big mission, and your donation means we can continue the day-to-day work to build stronger families and safer, healthier Texas communities.

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The Texas Criminal Justice Coalition is now the Texas Center for Justice and Equity! Learn More