WHY BAIL MATTERS
Each day, thousands of poor people languish in New York City jails because they cannot afford their bail - even when it is as low as $500 or $1,000. The overwhelming majority are facing misdemeanor charges. Research shows that people who are detained during their pretrial period face dramatically worse case outcomes than those who can afford their bail.
Thinking about creating your own charitable bail organization? Here's how to get started:
Please send your tax-deductible donation to:
The Bronx Freedom Fund
360 E. 161st St.
Bronx, NY 10451
Or use the link below:
"People who cannot pay bail often plead guilty, accepting a possibly life-altering record to go home to a child, to continue working, to return to whatever they left in the outside world.
An experimental program aims to help some of those people avoid jail time or a hastily made guilty plea by paying bail for poor defendants charged with misdemeanors. The fund is a project of the Bronx Defenders, a nonprofit provider of legal services."
State legislation passed last year allows not-for-profit organizations to act as bail bond agents ... This legislation was prompted by the work of The Bronx Defenders, an institutional defender office, that created a special fund [now the separately incorporated Bronx Freedom Fund] to help low-income offenders post minor bail amounts. The fund reports a 93 percent appearance rate for participating defendants. In the days ahead, we should be considering approaches like this in other parts of the state and with larger bail amounts.
Chief Judge of the State of New York,
State of the Judiciary Address
February 6, 2013