Karen DeWitt

Capitol Bureau Chief, New York State Public Radio

Karen has covered state government and politics for New York State Public Radio, a network of 10 New York and Connecticut stations, since 1990.  She is also a regular contributor to the statewide public television program about New York State government, New York Now. She appears on the reporter’s roundtable segment, and interviews newsmakers. 

Karen previously worked for WINS Radio, New York, and has written for numerous publications, including Adirondack Life and the Albany newsweekly Metroland.

She is a past recipient of the prestigious Walter T. Brown Memorial award for excellence in journalism, from the Legislative Correspondents Association, and was named Media Person of the Year for 2009 by the Women’s Press Club of New York State.

Karen is a graduate of the State University of New York at Geneseo.

The New York Capitol Building in Albany
Pete Dzintars / Flickr

The New York state Senate approved a measure this week to allow adult survivors of sexual harassment and assault to bring their abusers to court. Advocates hailed the action, but said they are increasingly frustrated and “alarmed” over the state Assembly's failure to act on the bill and on other anti-sexual harassment measures.

Courtesy of Pixabay

As the New York state Legislature’s session draws to a close, lawmakers are considering several criminal justice changes, including what’s known as the Clean Slate legislation. It would expunge some criminal records for those who have already served their time in prison.

Courtesy of Pixabay

Supporters of a measure that would end some legal immunity for police officers who injure or kill a citizen during an arrest rallied Wednesday at the State Capitol. They said the practice, known as qualified immunity, gives bad cops too much protection.

Courtesy of Pixabay

Democrats who lead the New York state Legislature are moving ahead with several criminal justice reforms in the remaining weeks of the 2021 session. But Republicans, who are in the minority party, are pushing back, saying the measures go too far and will contribute to the rising crime rate across New York.

Democratic N.Y. State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins
Mike Groll / AP

The New York state Legislature is scheduled to end its session in mid June. Lawmakers have a long list of criminal justice priorities that they hope to finish before then.

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