Curb Debt

Our Campaign to Curb Court Debt works to address harms caused by fines, fees, and bail and end the criminalization of poverty.

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About Court Debt

Fines are monetary punishments imposed for infractions, misdemeanors, or felonies. Excessive fines disproportionately affect the poor, destabilizing those already living at the economic margins and further leading to cycles of poverty and imprisonment

Fees are itemized payments for court activities, supervision, or incarceration charged to defendants and used to support operational costs in the criminal justice system.

Bail is a bond payment for a defendant's release from jail. Bail is posted prior to court proceedings. Each year, thousands of people sit in jail only because they can’t afford to post bail, placing them at risk of losing their jobs and other collateral consequences.

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Transparency

Together we will promote transparency through data collection and reporting on fines, fees and bail.

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Suspensions

Together we will end automatic driver’s license suspension for non-driving related offenses

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Bail & Bail Schedules

Together we will eliminate

bail and bail schedules.

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Alternatives

Together we will hold judges and prosecutors accountable to an ability to pay approach to debt collection and setting bail, including non-monetary conditions of release and sanctions.

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Court Watch

We are currently developing a court watch program to promote transparency in courtrooms, hold judges and prosecutors accountable, collect data, and center the voices of directly impacted individuals. 

Send us an email to learn more about how to get involved.