As FADP’s new Executive Director, I am committed to sharing information that allows you to fully and effectively participate in our campaign to protect people with serious mental illness from the death penalty (the SMI bill).
That commitment includes being very clear about why we chose to support this particular legislation fully.
The first reason is that it will save lives. And that, after all, is why we are here.
Second, I have represented many individuals with serious mental illnesses and can assure you they are among the most vulnerable people in the criminal justice system. They simply cannot navigate the criminal legal process in a way that maintains their constitutional rights and are at heightened risks of wrongful convictions and disproportionate sentences.
Finally, the passage of this legislation will reveal the depth and breadth of the strong opposition to the death penalty in Florida.
This is so important. Too many lawmakers believe that Floridians are somehow more pro-death penalty than the rest of the country. This is not true. By every measure – from polling to jury decisions – it is clear that Floridians are satisfied with a life sentence without the possibility of parole for all first-degree murders. And an even larger majority of Floridians do not believe people with serious mental illness should ever be executed.
These are some of the reasons we are going “all in” on the SMI bill. Will you join us with a gift to the SMI Campaign today? FADP is only able to do this work because of your generosity. As we look to pass the most important legislation in our 15-year history, please consider a gift to FADP today. Will you help lead the way with a gift of $50, $150, $250, or more?
It won’t be easy. We know the challenges we face. The momentum is with us, and I do not doubt that we will ultimately win. But we cannot do it without your support. Join us today.