Was an innocent man executed in 2004 at the hands of the Texas criminal justice system? And if he was, could the same situation be playing out across the country? The chances are good considering the lack of adherence to any sort of nationally accepted scientific standard when it comes to forensic criminal investigations. Numerous activists, attorneys, and scientific organizations are pushing Congress to establish a federal body responsible for the regulation of forensic sciences. Show your support by signing the petition below.
In 2003 Congress appropriated funds to the National Academy of Science (NAS) to study forensic science, assess resource needs of the forensics community, and make recommendations. The NAS reported their findings back to Congress in their Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States: A Path Forward in February 2009. In this intensely researched summary, the NAS made several well founded recommendations per Congress' request. Among these recommendations was the creation of an independent agency tasked with the oversight, regulation, and validation of forensic sciences.
By sending this letter I am asking Congress to once again examine the findings by the NAS and create such an agency. As science evolves at a lightning fast pace, we need to ensure that the methods being used to imprison and potentially execute Americans are fail proof and tightly regulated according to only the highest scientific standards. I respectfully request you support the creation of such an agency, in the interest of a system created to protect the truly innocent and in order to prevent outdated and unsubstantiated practices currently surviving under the heading of "forensic sciences".
Elizabeth Renter started this petition with a single signature, and now has 169 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.