On May 1, Steve and I will be riding in the TD Bank 5 Boro Bike Tour to raise money for and bring awareness to The Brooklyn Community Bail Fund.
The Brooklyn Community Bail Fund is a new organization whose very simple goal is to eliminate - lack of wealth - as a factor in pretrial detention. Their mission is to ensure equal access to the criminal justice system.
Please read all about them below and make sure you go to the bios of the staff. Everyone who works at BCBF is directly involved with helping clients. There are no extra administrators. Your contributions go directly to making our legal system more equitable.
The Brooklyn Community Bail Fund is a 501(c)(3) charitable bail organization that prevents unnecessary pretrial detention by paying bail for indigent New Yorkers accused of misdemeanors. For many New Yorkers, even small amounts of bail lead to imprisonment and coerced guilty pleas. Bail also frequently destabilizes already-struggling families and communities. It is a primary driver of mass incarceration, wastes public funds and intensifies the racial and economic inequality existing in our city and our nation.
The Fund pays bail of $2,000 or less for misdemeanor defendants who cannot otherwise afford it, thereby keeping families together, productive and stable. Like individuals with means, the Fund’s clients are able to fight their cases from a position of freedom. After bail is paid, the Fund facilitates access to critical services by working with teams of public defenders, reentry specialists, and social service providers.
The Fund is also involved in bail reform efforts in New York City and nationally. The Fund’s work shows bail to be costly, ineffective and unjust, thereby informing a vitally important national conversation about the need to eliminate money bail.
The Fund was featured prominently in the August New York Times Magazine cover story, “The Bail Trap,” and an accompanying photo essay, “A Night in Brooklyn Criminal Court.” The Fund’s work was also highlighted on HBO’s Last Week Tonight.
There are up to 10,000 misdemeanor defendants unable to afford bail in New York City each year. The need is great. Supporting a team member for the 5 Boro Bike Tour helps the Bail Fund expand its services and assist additional indigent New Yorkers. Your donation also helps the Fund continue advocating for reform of our inequitable bail system. The Brooklyn Community Bail Fund is a 501(c)(3) organization and your contribution is tax deductible.