Gov. Dannel P. Malloy Tuesday unveiled on Tuesday, Feb. 3, what he called \u201cSecond Chance Society\u201d initiatives that would change Connecticut\u2019s criminal justice system. Speaking at Yale Law School, Mr. Malloy said the proposals are \u201cdesigned to continue the progress being made in reducing the state\u2019s dropping crime rate, which is currently at a 48-year low, as well as ensuring nonviolent offenders are being reintegrated into society and become productive members of Connecticut\u2019s economy,\u201d according to a press release. Over the last four years, Mr. Malloy said, violent crime is down 36% and criminal arrests have decreased by nearly 28%. Violent crime in the state\u2019s three largest cities has fallen 15% since 2008. Citing that data, Mr. Malloy proposed action in five areas: \u2022\u00a0 \u00a0 Reclassifying certain nonviolent offenses; \u2022\u00a0 \u00a0 Eliminating mandatory minimum sentences for nonviolent drug possession; \u2022\u00a0 \u00a0 Streamlining Connecticut\u2019s parole system \u201cto make it more efficient and effective;\u201d \u2022\u00a0 \u00a0 Streamlining the state\u2019s pardons system to give ex-offenders a better chance at employment; \u2022\u00a0 \u00a0 Creating real job and housing opportunities for ex-offenders. \u201cThese initiatives build upon the progress we\u2019ve made in recent years reducing crime rates across Connecticut. They will help break the cycle of crime and poverty that hurts too many families and communities,\u201d Mr. Malloy said in a statement. \u201cMake no mistake, a crime is a crime. Offenders should be held accountable and there should be punishment. But punishments for nonviolent offenses should not last a lifetime. They should not destroy a person\u2019s hope for redemption or a better future. These initiatives will allow our law enforcement professionals and our courts to focus on serious crime and to better pursue and punish violent felons, putting them behind bars for longer sentences.\u201d Mr. Malloy said this comes as \u201ca new, bipartisan national consensus is building behind a Second Chance Society in states across the country, including in Texas, Mississippi, Georgia and Alabama.\u201d The governor cited initiatives implemented during his first four years in office as having a strong impact on reducing the crime rate in the state. These include: \u2022\u00a0 \u00a0 Reforms to the juvenile justice system, working to close the school-to-prison pipeline; \u2022\u00a0 \u00a0 Restoration of the state\u2019s crime lab to eliminate backlogs and restore it to best-in-the-nation status; \u2022\u00a0 \u00a0 Integration of federal, state, and local law enforcement into communities through community policing and programs such as Project Longevity; \u2022\u00a0 \u00a0 Removal of dangerous guns from the streets with gun buy backs, and approval of gun violence prevention legislation; \u2022\u00a0 \u00a0 Targeting violent offenders in communities and putting them away for longer sentences. \u201cBecause of these policies, fewer innocent people have been victimized and violent offenders are serving more time in prison than ever before,\u201d Mr. Malloy said. \u201cBut we can\u2019t be a perpetually punitive society. We have to do better in Connecticut. We have to become a Second Chance Society where we don\u2019t permanently punish nonviolent offenders, swelling our prisons and creating lifetime criminals out of people who made one mistake. Let\u2019s focus on effective solutions that break the cycle of crime and make our communities safer.\u201d Mr. Malloy\u2019s initiatives will be included in his legislative package of proposals for the 2015 session of the General Assembly. He said he will continue to roll out executive action furthering the goals of his Second Chance Society initiatives in the coming days and weeks.