The Risks Of Pre-Trial Detention

Jail cell
Via navajotimes
William Anderson
March 2, 2021

It doesn’t matter if you did the crime or not – once you’re in what’s called “pre-trial detention,” a lot of things can go wrong. Hundreds of thousands of people who are “legally innocent” are being held as we speak, and it’s all because of the unjust way this practice is carried out.

For example, many people are held pre-trial because they cannot afford bail. The criminal-legal system requires you to PAY for your freedom, and further criminalizes poverty in the process. This is a huge factor when it comes to mass incarceration.

Nearly three-fourths of people being held in jails have NOT been convicted of a crime! It’s considered a “preventative” measure by some, but there’s evidence that releasing people pre-trial doesn’t actually harm public safety! However, the concept of safety is part of the problem.

Black people are more likely to be detained pre-trial and are overrepresented in the nation’s prisons and jails – because “safety” is framed through a white supremacist rationale that targets our communities. We have to overcome this problem to make a difference.

Innocence and guilt are not the issue here, it’s anti-Black policing and incarceration we must address. In order to do that, we have to engage in a systematic dismantling of the criminal legal system as we know it. These illegitimate practices can’t continue unchallenged!

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