The discretionary parole process for persons convicted of nonviolent offenses has undergone significant changes in the six years since the court-ordered process for nonviolent second strikers was implemented in 2015. More incarcerated people are eligible for the process (i.e., persons required to register as a sex offender, indeterminately-sentenced persons, etc.) and many are eligible earlier in their incarceration. However, credit earning has also been expanded and persons are now eligible for referral to the Board despite recent negative in-prison behavior. As a result, many people referred to the Board today have more recent and more serious criminality as well as recent serious rules violations. As a result, the percentage of persons approved for release annually has trended downward. However, as eligibility criteria stabilizes and persons are provided an incentive and the ability to engage in rehabilitative programming upon admission to CDCR, it is reasonable to expect approval rates will increase.
In the interim, the Board will continue to make the most informed decisions possible based on the law and relevant evidence-based research concerning risk and recidivism, while protecting the rights of all who appear before it. The Board will also continue to adapt to judicial interpretations of the law governing discretionary parole under Proposition 57.