New Yorkers value justice, fairness, and equal opportunity. But our broken justice system is undermining these values. There are over 25,000 people detained in local jails across New York State on any given day; nearly 70% are being detained pretrial. This means they have not been convicted—they have only been charged with a crime, are presumed innocent, and are awaiting their day in court. Most are detained in jail pretrial simply because they cannot afford to pay cash bail. No one should be held in jail simply because they cannot afford to buy their freedom.
Testimony for NYC City Council Committee on Criminal Justice Oversight Hearing – Alternatives to Detention and Incarceration in New York City
Thursday, November 30, 2023 Thank you Chair Carlina Rivera for holding this hearing and inviting our testimony. My name is Yonah Zeitz, I’m the director