Kelly Calls for Capitol Talks on Crime to be Broadened, Opened to the Public

July 27, 2021

Senate Republican Leader Kevin Kelly (R-Stratford) is calling on legislative leaders to broaden legislative conversations on stopping crime and open the process with transparent public hearings, releasing the following statement today:


“Connecticut is at a crossroads when it comes to making our state safer. We can choose quick fixes and nibble around the edges. Or, we can start down a new path to not only establish appropriate consequences to combat crime, but also to prevent crime, to create opportunity and hope, and to rehabilitate by looking at the big picture.


“While conversations have been happening at the State Capitol on some reforms, Democratic leaders have limited those conversations and kept them closed to the public. The solution to stopping crime is not going to come from a group of political elites sitting under the golden dome. We need to look outside the Capitol and into our communities. We have community leaders who no one is listening to. Democrats who have controlled our state for decades are out of touch and have allowed problems to fester, especially in our cities. Some Democrats have even dismissed concerns about rising violent crime, accusing people of rooting for failure and peddling fear and hiding behind the excuse that the issue of growing crime is a national trend. The reality is there is a problem. That problem is here in Connecticut. And it is even worse in our Democrat-controlled cities.


“We must broaden conversations to address the root causes of rising violent crime. We must look at consequences for repeat offenders, but we also must aim to create opportunity, jobs, and a ladder out of poverty. We cannot ignore that Connecticut is dead last in job growth and income growth and Connecticut’s economy is failing our kids and failing our cities. We need to create good paying jobs for all families. We need to involve police, community leaders, prosecutors, and youth advocates. We need to open communication and empower community members to be part of the solution.


“It is past time to broaden the conversation and open it to the public. We have a call to action. We have an opportunity for change. We must not let comprehensive reform slip away.”