Rally to #EndMoneyBail
Last summer, Cook County Chief Judge Timothy Evans issued General Order 18.8A. The Order went into effect on September 18, 2017, and it states that no person is to be incarcerated in Cook County Jail simply because they can’t afford to pay a money bond. To implement the order, Judge Evans assigned six new bond court judges to Central Bond Court. In the first three months after the Order was implemented, the number of people incarcerated in Cook County Jail (CCJ) dropped by more than 1,400 people. This progress came to abrupt halt in January 2018, however, and since then, the number of people locked up in CCJ has hovered consistently around 6,100 people.
There are still around 2,500 people incarcerated before trial in Cook County Jail because they can’t afford to pay a money bond, which is in direct contradictionwith the Order. Judges across Cook County’s criminal courtrooms and bond courts continue to disregard the Order, including those who were handpicked by Judge Evans. Since the Order went into effect, they have returned to setting unaffordable bonds. After dropping dramatically, the rates at which judges at Central Bond Court issue I-bonds (release without having to pay money) has slowly gone down, while the rates at which people receive unaffordable money bonds has increased.
If Cook County were to fully implement General Order 18.8A, we could become a national leader in the movement to end mass incarceration. By ending money bond in Cook County, we have the opportunity to kick the foundation out on the prison industrial complex. People released while awaiting trial are less likely to be convicted, less likely to be sentenced to prison, and even less likely to be arrested in the future. Money bond and pretrial incarceration punish people for being poor and Black and Brown, and then they send those same people deeper into the criminal legal system.
Join the Chicago Community Bond Fund, the Coalition to End Money Bond, the National Bail Fund Network, A Just Harvest, Assata’s Daughters, Black Lives Matter Chicago, Circles & Ciphers,
Community Renewal Society, For the People Artists Collective,
GoodKids MadCity, Justice Informed, National Lawyers Guild of Chicago, The People’s Lobby, People’s Response Team, Reclaim Chicago, Workers Center for Racial Justice and many more local groups in downtown Chicago (exact location TBA) on September 18th to hold this unjust system accountable and bring our people home!Sign and share the petition to #EndMoneyBail: https://actionnetwork.org/…/support-bond-reform-in-cook-cou…
Video produced by Sensitive Visuals