For Immediate Release: February 23, 2017
Contact: Fiona Druge, email@example.com, (646) 755-6126; Chris Collibee (Office of Governor Dannel Malloy), firstname.lastname@example.org, (860) 205-7457
Connecticut — Governor Dannel Malloy and Cherise Fanno Burdeen, chief executive officer of the Pretrial Justice Institute (PJI), today announced that Connecticut is joining 3DaysCount, a national campaign led by the Pretrial Justice Institute to make pretrial justice in America safer, fairer, and more effective. Connecticut joins Guam and Illinois as the third jurisdiction to join the 3DaysCount campaign, which is focused on implementing proven, evidence-based improvements in pretrial justice—the portion of the criminal justice system that extends from first contact with law enforcement to resolution of any resulting charges.
“Connecticut is excited to be joining 3DaysCount and its effort to end inequality in our nation’s criminal justice system,” said Governor Malloy. “Like other states in this growing movement, we are committed to implementing commonsense changes in our pretrial justice system to make it fairer to poor and working class people, more effective in protecting victims and the public, and more responsible in its use of taxpayer dollars.”
“PJI is delighted to welcome Connecticut to 3DaysCount,” said PJI’s Chief Executive Officer Cherise Fanno Burdeen. “Under Governor Malloy, Connecticut has shown exceptional leadership in its determination to reduce unnecessary arrests, move away from the use of unfair, ineffective, and discriminatory money bail, and ensure that courts can confidently protect victims and communities from the small number of defendants who are genuinely dangerous. By joining the 3DaysCount community, Connecticut is adding momentum to a national movement that is leading to safer communities, better outcomes for people who come in contact with law enforcement, and more effective use of scarce public resources. We look forward to working with Governor Malloy and others in Connecticut to realize these important outcomes.”
The Pretrial Justice Institute is a nationally recognized resource for legal and evidence-based solutions to common pretrial justice challenges. As part of its 3DaysCount campaign, it will work with up to 20 participating states to realize three specific goals by the year 2020:
PJI will also support participating 3DaysCount sites by leading a national action campaign to directly engage communities in calling for transparency and needed change in the pretrial justice system.
Today, nearly half a million legally innocent people are held in U.S. in jails at an aggregate annual cost to taxpayers of nearly $14 billion. Most of these men and women could be released to await trial in the community and be counted on, with a little support, to appear in court and not be rearrested while they handle their case. They remain detained solely because they are unable to afford money bail. It is unfair to hold a poor person in jail while another person who poses a similar risk level can pay money and be released. It is also unsafe. Research shows that as little as three days in jail can destabilize the things we know make people low risk: jobs and housing, education and health care, family support and connections. Moreover, current money bail systems threaten public safety—half of the highest risk people exploit the existing money bail system to purchase their freedom without any supervision by the courts.
Since 1977 the Pretrial Justice Institute (PJI) has been a national resource for policy makers at the federal, state and local levels. PJI’s core purpose is to advance safe, fair, and effective juvenile and adult pretrial justice practices and policies that honor and protect all people. We work to achieve this by monitoring the state of and advocating for pretrial justice in America; convening, educating, and supporting stakeholders to transform their colleagues and systems; and demonstrating that change is possible by working directly with jurisdictions on implementation.