Jason Witmer, a brown-skinned African American man, wears a tan stocking cap and a state-issued brown jacket adorned with a button that boldly declares "People Not Prison." Jason stands confidently poised, holding a microphone to his lips.


Policy Fellow

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Jason's life began in the heart of Nebraska, where he faced a host of challenges from his earliest days. Systemic issues followed him from childhood into adulthood, but rather than succumbing to their weight, he decided to rise above them and make a positive impact on his community.

Jason earned his associate degree in human services from Southeast Community College and began work as a peer specialist, offering support to individuals in need, and later assumed a role at a peer respite house. In this position, he played a vital role in assisting individuals on the verge of a mental health crisis find the balance to continue on their journey without the need for hospitalization.

During this time, Jason educated his community about the impact of the criminal legal and the prison systems. He passionately advocated for reform, striving to raise awareness about the far-reaching consequences these systems had on individuals and their communities.   

Today, Jason has found his place at the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Nebraska, where he continues his mission. He believes that through compassion and a commitment to Smart Justice, we can create safer communities, inside and out, and shift away from punitive actions and their consistently negative outcomes.