Sandy LoMonico is not new to the justice reform movement in Connecticut, but she is new to the ACLU of Connecticut. Sandy was a prominent proponent of the Connecticut Fair Chance Employment Act, raise the age law, and law to reduce lengthy sentencing of youth. In 2016, the City of Hartford recognized Sandy for her community engagement efforts, and she was awarded the Professional Achievement for Outstanding Excellence Award by Governor Dannel Malloy.

Sandy received her dual degree in social work and public health from UConn while working as a graduate research assistant to analyze the complex justice issues affecting the lives of African American and Latino families. While a student at UConn, Sandy founded Students Against Mass Incarceration (SAMI), the UConn School of Social Work’s first justice reform-focused student organization. As a rehabilitated formerly incarcerated person, the consistent message that Sandy delivers includes adopting the philosophy that “those closest to the problem are closest to the solution.”

An alumna of JustLeadershipUSA, Sandy joined the ACLU of Connecticut in December as the ACLU-CT’s first dedicated criminal justice organizer. In her role, Sandy will be working to reduce the state’s prison population, advance racial justice, and include people who are directly impacted by the justice system in creating solutions to mass incarceration.

Sandy recently sat down with Meghan Smith, the ACLU-CT’s communications director, to share why she is excited for the latest chapter in her work toward justice reform.

ACLU-CT: What is one item in your office that means a lot to you?

Sandy LoMonico:
My plant. It’s a part of nature, and it keeps me grounded. I have to take care of something every day. It’s green and it’s real—it’s not just paper, it’s alive.

ACLU-CT: Why are you looking forward to working with the ACLU-CT?

Sandy LoMonico: 
There’s a million reasons. I see myself as a huge social justice advocate. I’ve always been interested in standing up for all people’s rights, not just one group. I think the ACLU’s mission aligns with that.

ACLU-CT: What’s one fact that you think people would be surprised to learn about you?

Sandy LoMonico: 
My first dance performance was in a fourth grade talent show. I danced to “Straight Up” by Paula Abdul, and I had to find MC Hammer pants to go with it.

To keep up with the ACLU of Connecticut’s justice reform work in 2018, follow along on Facebook and Twitter and check in regularly for updates to the criminal justice section of our website. 

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