Drawing on a case study of more than 175,000 defendants in New York City, this report concludes concerns over risk assessments perpetuating racial disparities in pretrial decisions are real. However, at least in the New York City example, it finds a more targeted use of risk assessments could both significantly reduce pretrial detention and alleviate racial disparities. But realizing that potential requires jurisdictions to think "beyond the algorithm"—what do they want to use a risk assessment for?
The Center for Court Innovation piloted a small electronic monitoring program—using smartphones—for young people under justice supervision. This article offers insights into the best ways to approach technology projects in the justice system, but also concludes that electronic tracking of 16- to 18-year-olds in school raised multiple challenges and provided too little benefit to serve as a replacement for traditional supervision methods.
As the use of technology in the justice system becomes more common, it is important that those designing and implementing new systems adhere to principles that support human dignity with an eye on achieving objectives in the simplest and least intrusive way possible. These principles were developed by the Center for Court Innovation in collaboration with the Open Society Foundation and Blue Ridge Labs at the Robin Hood Foundation.
About two out of three people in local jails are being held awaiting trial, often because they can't afford bail. What if a mathematical formula could do a more objective job of identifying who could be safely released? That's the promise of risk assessments. But critics call them "justice by algorithm," and contend they're reproducing the bias inherent to the justice system, only this time under the guise of science.
This webinar focuses on child support and its intersection with the work of Price of Justice grantees to address the overuse of justice fines and fees. Jacqueline Boggess, executive director of the Center for Family Policy and Practice, provides an introduction to the child support system and discuss the impact of child support debt on justice-involved individuals. Price of Justice grantee sites then explore the implications for their projects through a discussion facilitated by the Center for Court Innovation.
The breadth and flexibility of technology provides the opportunity to generate new and innovative solutions in our legal system and better serve people who encounter it, regardless of their location, technological literacy, or language skills. These solutions can make court systems, programs, and services more efficient while at the same time increasing access to justice.
This document details the implementation of innovative teleservices programs in seven jurisdictions around the country. The jurisdictions featured in this publication use teleservices to increase treatment court capacity, overcome treatment barriers, supervise participants, and provide training for staff.
This report presents the findings from an evaluation of the Intelligence-Driven Prosecution Model, implemented in 2010 by the New York County District Attorney’s Office. The model relies on the Crime Strategies Unit which uses intelligence and technology to understand the people, places, and problems driving crime in order to improve prosecutorial decision-making.
In this New Thinking podcast, Kerry Walker, director of the Neighbourhood Justice Centre in Melbourne, Australia, describes some of the ways the Justice Centre engages the community, all with the long-term goal of promoting the rule of law and a “civil, caring society.” The podcast concludes with a discussion of ways the Justice Centre is using technology to promote safety and make the court more user-friendly.
Technology offers justice systems new ways to link offenders to substance abuse treatment and other needed services. In addition, technology enhances the ability of justice systems to monitor offender compliance and provide staff with ongoing training and professional development. This paper explores the use of technology in drug courts and offers recommendations for drug court practitioners seeking to enhance their work with technology.