MANHATTAN — Leaders across the sports, entertainment and business industries are coming together to form an organization devoted to reforming the American criminal justice system.
The reform comes in the wake of the public injustices of Meek Mill and Kalief Browder.
Browder was 16 when he was held for three years at Rikers Island when his family couldn’t come up with some $200 in bail money. He spent two years in solitary confinement and never convicted of a crime. He died by suicide two years later.
His plight, and that of rapper Mill, who was incarcerated after a minor parole violation, was the spark of change.
Today, Titans of their industries will join money and influence to create real change.
Meek Mill was sentenced to two to four years for violation of his probation on aa 2008 gun and drug case in Pennsylvania. After judge denied Mill bail, his plea was moved to the state’s Supreme Court.
“I grew up being trained that we just went to prison,” the rapper said.
Both are symbols of a broken criminal justice system when it comes to men of color.
Now a force to change that Jay Z, Meek Mill, Robert Kraft, owner of the New England Patriots and other leaders are creating a new organization to affect true change to the criminal justice system.
Michael Rubin, Philadelphia 76ers co-owner, Daniel Loeb, Third Point LLC. CEO., Michael Novogratz, Galaxy Digital CEO, Robert Smith, Vista Equity Partners CEO and Clara Wu Tsai, Brooklyn Nets co-owner, are among the leaders partaking in the launch.
Bold face names to tackle a crisis in New York and beyond.
Meek is already using his own incarceration and fame to shine a light on the epidemic.
“I see Kalief Browder as a prophet,” said Jay Z when talking about his documentary series on the teen.
It’s the latest effort from the media mogul that won a Peabody award.
“When it comes to criminal justice reform, the people in power have to say something. Because the people at the bottom have been yelling and screaming and you need someone willing to listen to put something behind it,” explained Meredith Sandiford of Boston when it comes to reforms.