WASHINGTON, DC –
Tomorrow, Tuesday March 28, the Bipartisan Working Group will host a group of NFL players at their weekly breakfast meeting to discuss criminal justice issues.
“I applaud these men for their civic engagement and of course their continued success on the football field. BPWG is a great place for both sides of the aisle to bring their different perspectives to help reform this broken system," said BPWG founder, Renacci.
“I’d like to thank these players for sitting down with the Bipartisan Working Group and for being leaders both on and off the field. Their commitment to making our communities safer and providing more opportunities for at risk youth sets an example for all of us,” BPWG Co-Chair, Rep. Derek Kilmer (D-WA) states. “Democrats and Republicans can do their part by focusing on issues where we can make progress, like criminal justice reform.”
Rep. Daniel Webster (R-FL) who helped orchestrate the meeting said: "It was an honor to meet with these players earlier this year and see firsthand their passion and commitment to being involved. I was inspired by their desire to engage and be a part of finding real solutions in our communities."
Anquan Boldin, Malcolm Jenkins, Donte’ Stallworth and Johnson Bademosi are visiting Washington, D.C. to continue the criminal justice reform work they began in November of last year. In addition to the BPWG, and numerous member meetings, the athletes will also present public testimony at a house judiciary forum on Thursday morning.
“We are looking forward to have the opportunity to meet with the Bipartisan Working Group,” said Boldin. “We are committed to working with all members of congress, regardless of political affiliation, who share the goal of moving important legislation like criminal justice reform forward.”
“We appreciate the opportunity to be heard and to lend our support. Currently, the disparity between mass incarceration and funding for rehabilitation programs is what is hurting our communities. We need to reform mandatory sentencing laws and re-entry programs for nonviolent offenders. Instead of spending money keeping people locked up, we should be investing in helping people overcoming their past and starting anew. Our goal is to revisit and garner support for important legislation like the Second Chance Act, which would offer them opportunities to turn their lives around through successful drug recovery programs, job training and mental health treatment,” said Jenkins.
The Bipartisan Working Group was founded by Congressman Renacci in 2011 and currently co-chairs the group with Rep. Derek Kilmer (D-WA). The BPWG includes both Republican and Democratic lawmakers who share the belief that fostering interparty collegiality can lead to meaningful legislative partnerships and tangible results. Today, the BPWG consists of over 20 members, evenly divided between the two parties, who meet once a week while Congress is in session. It has proven to be a successful vehicle for bringing legislation to the floor and garnering support for bills from both sides of the aisle.
Anquan Boldin, a 14-year NFL veteran and three-time Pro Bowler, was named the NFL’s Walter Payton Man of the Year in 2015 for his community service, and is the Founder of the Anquan Boldin Foundation (also known as Q81), a 501c3 organization dedicated to expanding the educational and life opportunities of underprivileged children through scholarships, enrichment programs and community outreach.
Malcolm Jenkins, a Pro Bowl Safety for the Philadelphia Eagles, was named the NFLPA’s Byron Whizzer White Award in 2017 for his achievements in community service. He is the Founder and Chairman of The Malcolm Jenkins Foundation, a 501c3 Foundation committed to youth development in underserved communities in PA, OH, LA and NJ through programs and initiatives that emphasize education, character, life skills, health and recreation.
Renacci has represented the 16th district of Ohio since 2011 and sits on the Ways and Means Committee and Budget Committee.