bg-header-wemu-rs.jpg
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

Washtenaw County exploring how to remove fines and fees from criminal justice system

gavel.png
Wikimedia Commons
/
wikipedia.org
Gavel

Washtenaw County is exploring ways to reduce or even eliminate justice system fines and fees. To do that, the county recently joined the national organization Cities and Counties for Fine and Fee Justice, or CCFFJ.

Statistics show that the criminal justice system disproportionately affects poor people and people of color. Fees associated with the criminal justice system can compound already difficult situations. Because of that, some major metropolitan areas have taken steps to remove those.

The challenge is, if you remove those revenues from the courts, where does the funding come from?

Through the CCFFJ, Washtenaw County spokesperson Crystal Campbell says this is an opportunity to change how the justice system does business.

“If a city/county as large as San Francisco has been able to do it and not create deficits, not see gaps in their budgets, then Washtenaw County can do it also.” 

One of the requirements for the program is to perform a review of the county budget through a lens of racial equity. That report is expected to be presented in September.

Non-commercial, fact based reporting is made possible by your financial support.  Make your donation to WEMU today to keep your community NPR station thriving.

Like 89.1 WEMU on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Contact WEMU News at 734.487.3363 or email us at studio@wemu.org

Josh Hakala is the general assignment reporter for the WEMU news department.
Related Content