Bail, Fines, and Fees A look at how bail, fines, and fees in the criminal justice system impact poor communities in New Orleans
The New Orleans criminal justice system, like many other local systems across the country, operates significantly on funding generated from the people cycling through it—from bail and associated fees before trial, to fines and fees levied after conviction. These practices come with hidden costs to defendants—the majority of whom are poor and black—and taxpayers alike. Such “user fees” are often set without consideration of the defendants’ financial means and failure to pay can keep someone behind bars or land them back in jail. This perpetuates an overreliance on local incarceration that exacts significant unnecessary costs on individuals, communities, and taxpayers alike. This explainer video from the Past Due project sheds light on fines, fees, and financial bail in New Orleans.
Series: Gender and Justice in America
Women’s History Month Round-Up
Our Most Popular Posts on Gender and Justice
Women and girls are too often invisible in talks of criminal justice and reform. Although they comprise a minority of people who are incarcerated in the United States, they are a fast growing population, with unique entry points into the system. They also present different needs than men once there. The situation is particularly concerning for wome...
Jail in New York City
Evidence-Based Opportunities for Reform
Jail in New York City: Evidence-Based Opportunities for Reform examines the key decision points within New York City’s criminal justice system that drive people into the jail. The report uses rich data on case processing, pretrial decision-making, bail decisions, and case disposition to understand how decision makers can impact the size of the jail...
“Just Call Me Bala”
Remembering Malar Balasubramanian, 1976 - 2017
While Malar will be remembered for her generous and infectious spirit, she also serves as a reminder that mental health can be a lifelong struggle. Understanding issues concerning suicide and mental health is an important way to take part in suicide prevention, help others in crisis, and change the conversation around suicide. If you see warning si...