RISE

New Director of Public Policy and Advocacy

Jasmine L. Harris, MPH, CHES

Change in Nebraska's criminal justice landscape.

Jasmine Harris is transitioning to RISE's new Director of Public Policy and Advocacy. In this role, Jasmine's focus is to influence advocacy initiatives and advance large-scale reform. The overall goals are to help reduce the population of incarcerated individuals and eliminate the barriers people endure upon returning home after incarceration in Nebraska. Establishing relationships with partners, policymakers and community members are essential in this role.

Jasmine's background in coalition building around substance use policy and prevention efforts has paved the way for her to build her community advocacy and create awareness and influence the advancement of legislation and policy that benefits people who have been impacted by the criminal justice system.  During her time as the Urban League of Nebraska Young Professionals Civic Engagement Committee Chair, Jasmine led the group in efforts that raised awareness about criminal justice issues and established the Black & Brown Legislative Day, which created an opportunity for youth and people of color to learn more about the legislative processes in Nebraska's unicameral.

With her wealth of knowledge, organization and community connections, and proven work ethic, Jasmine has the opportunity to utilize this position to create real change in Nebraska's criminal justice landscape.


Much of recidivism can be traced to returning citizens reoffending during their first 100 days out because they can’t get a job, they lose confidence and hope, and often return to illegal means to earn money and survive. 89% of people in the U.S. that reoffend don’t have a job at the time they do. A job isn’t a silver bullet, but it can be the difference between reentry stability and re-incarceration.

As America is dealing with COVID-19, civil unrest and a great political division, we would be remiss to not mention that 2020 is an historical election year. Elections are important especially because the elected officials’ duties will include enacting policies that affect people who are currently and formerly incarcerated.

"Thanks to RISE, it pushed me to change what I saw on paper. There have been a few curves along the way and hiccups, but that's ok. I learned it's all about growing..."