Thank You

By Chad Thevenot, Coordinator for the Coalition for Jubilee Clemency

Thank you for support of the Coalition for Jubilee Clemency's (CJC) campaign asking President Clinton to grant clemency (i.e., commutation of sentence) to low-level, nonviolent federal drug offenders. The campaign was an important part of a larger, national campaign for such clemencies. As many of you already know, on January 20, 2001, his last day in office, President Clinton commuted the sentences of 36 individuals, including 21 drug war prisoners. A list of the January 20th commutations is online at

Additionally, on December 22, 2000, President Clinton granted clemency to Kemba Smith and Dorothy Gaines, two women serving extremely long sentences in federal prison for low-level, nonviolent drug convictions. The Coalition for Jubilee Clemency featured Dorothy's case in its campaign. Dorothy is now at home with her three children, and very challenged to make a successful transition to a new and hopeful life in the community.

If you care to write Dorothy and - and if you are able to help with the difficult adjustment to life outside of prison, please write to:

Dorothy Gaines 2758 S. Thompson Drive Mobile, AL 36606

The Coalition for Jubilee Clemency was supported by the Criminal Justice Policy Foundation (CJPF), a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit organization that informs and educates the public about important criminal justice reforms. For information about CJPF, please visit

A large amount of credit for the clemencies goes to Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM), which played a lead role in encouraging President Clinton to grant clemencies to low-level, nonviolent drug offenders. If you are not already a member of FAMM, please consider joining their organization. Information about FAMM is available at

Also instrumental at the grass roots in the clemency campaign was The November Coalition, which gathered almost 35,000 signatures representing a significant cross-section of popular support for Presidential clemencies. The November Coalition is online at, and also a membership organization of prisoners, their loved ones, and citizens who oppose the drug war.
We are drafting a final report about the Coalition for Jubilee Clemency's sign-on letter campaign, including information about the success of our press strategy. If you would like a copy, please indicate so in a reply to the following email address, and please include your own mailing address.

Finally, the steering committee of the Coalition for Jubilee Clemency will meet in February to discuss how to shape a clemency campaign aimed at President Bush. We welcome your ideas and suggestions.

Chad Thevenot, Coordinator, Coalition for Jubilee Clemency 1225 Eye Street, NW, Suite 500 Washington, DC 20005 Tel: (202) 312-2015, Fax: (202) 842-2620