Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Detroit Free Press: Criminal System Fails Indigent

I found this editorial on the Detroit Free Press. It discusses the poor state of the criminal justice system for indigent individuals and families.
Michigan must establish uniform standards and oversight of its public defense system -- and assure adequate funding. It is now one of only a handful of states that rely almost entirely on counties to pay for and run their public defender systems.

Shifting public defense spending from local governments to the state; creating, measuring and enforcing statewide standards for indigent defense; and adequately funding such a system were among the most important recommendations unveiled last week in a sweeping report on how to overhaul Michigan's court system.

Although criminal justice is not my background, this editorial also provides policy analysis and recommendations for why the state needs a more just criminal system.

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