Vera Institute of Justice on Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’s Suspension of State Attorney Monique Worrell

The Vera Institute of Justice opposes the suspension of State Attorney Monique Worrell from the Ninth Judicial Circuit by Governor Ron DeSantis. We believe in the importance of due process and fairness in addressing matters related to public officials. State Attorney Worrell was duly elected by her community to uphold public safety, and her research-backed practices and policies do the opposite of Governor DeSantis’s claim; they protect the people of Orange and Osceola Counties.

The responsibility of a state attorney is significant, as they play a vital role in the criminal legal system and impact the lives of countless individuals and communities. Their use of discretion to strike a balance between upholding the law and ensuring the rights of individuals, while also protecting the safety and well-being of the public is sacrosanct. Our criminal justice system works best when it operates with integrity, accountability, and a commitment to justice for all.

The unwarranted removal of State Attorney Worrell is nothing new, it is just the worst example of how, in recent years, Black women chief prosecutors have faced a unique and especially virulent series of attacks—lawsuits, appointments of special prosecutors, recalls, and racialized intimidation.

As an organization dedicated to justice and fairness within the criminal legal system, we encourage open dialogue and collaboration between stakeholders to ensure that the principles of justice are upheld and that the public interest is protected. This decision does neither. The removal of State Attorney Worrell is a blow to public safety and the trust of her community.


About the Vera Institute of Justice
The Vera Institute of Justice is powered by hundreds of advocates, researchers, and policy experts working to transform the criminal legal and immigration systems until they’re fair for all. Founded in 1961 to advocate for alternatives to money bail in New York City, Vera is now a national organization that partners with impacted communities and government leaders for change. We develop just, antiracist solutions so that money doesn’t determine freedom; fewer people are in jails, prisons, and immigration detention; and everyone is treated with dignity. Vera’s headquarters is in Brooklyn, New York, with offices in Washington, DC, New Orleans, and Los Angeles. For more information, visit