In an effort to combat the spread of COVID-19, New York City has begun releasing people from its jails.
The Center for Court Innovation's Supervised Release Program has been central to this effort, providing supervision to those released from the jails on Rikers Island. Along with the city's other supervised release providers, the Center will help hundreds of vulnerable New Yorkers be freed from jail so that they can engage in the social distancing that is crucial to fighting the coronavirus.
Since New York State's bail reforms officially went into effect in January—and before the novel coronavirus protocols were implemented—admissions to our supervised release program had grown by more than 1,000 cases to a total of more than 1,500. Without supervision, many of these people would have been in close confinement, making a potentially catastrophic situation that much worse.
We've continued to work with our supervised release clients even as we have transitioned to remote work. Our social workers are connecting clients to voluntary social services to address issues such as mental health, substance use, or lack of stable housing. Similar efforts to reach and support our clients remotely is happening across the Center’s programming.
Updates and Resources on COVID-19
- Many of our programs are still available remotely. See updated hours and contact information.
- Listen to the In Practice podcast: Drug Courts in the Time of COVID-19 and COVID-19 and the Challenge for Court-Involved Families
- Read our statement on how we are keeping our communities safe.