Recent Articles

HB 1795 reduces driver’s license suspensions for court fines and fees

Oklahoma Justice system court fines and fees Each year, thousands of Oklahomans face driver’s license suspension for failure to pay court fines and fees. As OK Policy has reported previously, tens of thousands of failure to pay arrest warrants are issued each year to the poorest Oklahomans. [More...]

Reducing Oklahoma’s court fines and fees is police reform

While much of this conversation has been focused on municipal budgets and inadequate funding for mental health and social services, it’s also critical that lawmakers consider how the system of court fines and fees contributes to racial disparities in both policing and incarceration. [More...]

COVID-19 in Oklahoma prisons is a moral emergency

Numerous prisons in this state are battling growing outbreaks, but Oklahoma’s policymakers still have time to act. [More...]

Parole reform was crucial in ending Oklahoma’s status as the world’s prison capital

As a result of parole reform, Oklahoma is no longer the prison capital of the world. The state now has the nation’s third highest per capita incarceration rate behind Louisiana and Mississippi. [More...]

SQ 802 is a win for criminal justice reform in Oklahoma

Beyond its enormous implications for our health care system, State Question 802, the ballot measure to expand Medicaid in Oklahoma, is also a significant criminal justice issue. Nearly a decade of evidence shows that expanding Medicaid increases access to mental… Read more [More...]

Medical parole is necessary to help protect Oklahoma prisons and hospitals from COVID-19 

Spread of the virus within Oklahoma’s incarceration system will remain an ongoing threat to vulnerable inmates, corrections staff and rural hospitals. Without decisive action from state leaders to reduce its transmission, the virus has very real potential to make both prisons and our communities less safe in the long run.  [More...]

County jails in Oklahoma face immense risk from COVID-19

As the state grapples with this pandemic, overcrowded and under-resourced jails present enormous risk to rural hospitals and to the state’s most vulnerable communities who are typically jailed at disproportionate rates. [More...]

Oklahoma’s prisons and jails require executive action to combat COVID-19

The COVID-19 crisis is having a terrible impact on prisons and jails across the nation, and Oklahoma’s corrections system desperately needs resources to stave off the risk of an outbreak here as well. Because social distancing is impossible in prisons and jails, those administering these facilities should develop immediate plans for the compassionate release for as many people as possible. [More...]

Oklahoma prisons at risk during COVID-19 health emergency

Because Oklahoma still has one of the highest incarceration rates in the nation, this problem will require more comprehensive solutions than those offered so far. [More...]

The Governor’s justice task force gives lawmakers a chance to address the scale of Oklahoma’s prison crisis

The RESTORE task force could bring greater justice to the state’s prison system by strengthening investments in alternatives to incarceration and treatment, reducing fines and fees, lowering the impact of cash bail on the poorest Oklahomans, and creating a dedicated re-entry system.  [More...]