Former Boston assistant district attorney Adam Foss spoke with Steve Kraske on KCUR’s Up to Date on Wednesday about the role prosecutors can play in reforming the criminal justice system.
Foss travels the country with his organization Prosecutor Impact, speaking to prosecutors about implementing alternatives to incarceration and focusing less on punishment and more on education and rehabilitation.
Foss told Kraske that prosecutors could have a great impact on the criminal justice system by seeing the humanity in every defendant and not defining them by the crimes they are charged with.
He said that individuals also have a role in learning the reality of the criminal justice system. The former assistant district attorney encouraged the public to educate themselves about the criminal justice system and to voice their concerns to their elected officials.
“The public courthouse was made public for a reason,” Foss told Kraske. “It’s encouraged that people go and take a morning to sit in the courtroom and see what’s happening and see if all of the people in there need to be in there and if all the people that are in there need to be going to jail … When you say it, when the communities that aren’t impacted by the criminal justice system say ‘I’m not satisfied,’ that’s when you start to see change.”