NEWARK – The American Civil Liberties Union of New Jersey (ACLU-NJ) is urging the legislature to adopt recommendations issued today (1mb PDF) by the Joint Committee on Criminal Justice.
The committee, formed in 2013, was established to focus on issues relating to bail and the delays in bringing criminal cases to trial. The committee is comprised of judges, prosecutors, public defenders, private attorneys, court administrators and staff from the Legislature and Governor’s office.
ACLU-NJ Senior Staff Attorney Alexander Shalom was one of the members of the committee.
The following statement is from Alexander Shalom, senior staff attorney at the ACLU of New Jersey.
“The report of the Joint Committee on Criminal Justice is groundbreaking because it reflects a unanimous view by people and organizations with seemingly divergent interests,” said Alexander Shalom, senior staff attorney at the ACLU-NJ. “Prosecutors, defense attorneys, civil libertarians, judges and court administrators have joined voices with representatives of the legislative and executive branches to say that the current system of bail and detention promotes neither justice nor public safety. These seemingly strange bedfellows all recognize that a system where hundreds of people are jailed because they don’t have a few hundred dollars to post bail unfairly jails the poorest among us not the most dangerous among us.
“We call upon the Legislature to swiftly move on the Committee’s recommendations and pass comprehensive bail reform with speedy trial protections.”