Over the last year or so we’ve updated you on a new issue for the Stand community: the elimination of juvenile court fines and fees.
Our research and advocacy has shown that these fees and fines are not an effective accountability tool and can actually increase recidivism. They punish families living in poverty and deepen the economic injustice they already face in our most vulnerable communities.
Removing fees and fines does not impact a judge’s ability to order victim’s restitution, community service, or other appropriate non-monetary conditions that provide solid opportunities for young people to take accountability for their actions. We can hold young people accountable without pushing them into a deep financial hole. And now we have a chance to fix this problem! A bill up for hearing next week in the Senate Judiciary Committee would repeal these juvenile court fees and fines. It’s on us to stand up and do what’s right. Submit a witness slip today!
Submitting a witness slip in support of this legislation is easy! Follow these simple steps to make an impact:
- Click this link.
- Fill in your information.
- For “Representation,” you can enter Debt Free Justice Illinois, or something like “parent” or “self”
- For “Position,” check “Proponent”
- For “Testimony,” check “Record of Appearance Only”
- Agree to the “Terms of Service.”
You’re done and you just made a difference!
We’re working with a statewide coalition called Debt Free Justice Illinois. This group of advocates are dedicated to moving us toward economic justice and away from the financial burden of these fees and fines. By passing this bill, Illinois will join a bipartisan group of 20 states that have already eliminated juvenile court fees and fines.