ACLU: Why N.J.'s new pretrial justice system is fairer and smarter | Opinion
By Alexander Shalom
Attacking pretrial justice reform has become New Jersey's latest political fad.
These assaults, whether qualified reservations or full-on opposition, reflect the same thing: a profound misunderstanding of the way the new pretrial justice system works.
Pretrial justice reform in our state ended a reality where people awaited trial in jail simply because they were poor, not because they posed a danger. New Jersey's smart and humane reforms changed that and made our state a criminal justice pioneer.
The new system rejects reliance on gut feelings or hunches. Instead, scores assess a defendant's risk in three areas: non-appearance, new criminal activity, and violent activity.
Last month, Newark Councilman Anibal Ramos Jr. and Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop objected to details of how bail reform is implemented in critiques that revealed misconceptions.
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