Just City, the Memphis-based criminal justice reform advocacy group, has helped launch another standalone group…in Nashville.
On Wednesday, Just City announced the formal organization of the Nashville Community Bail Fund. The Memphis group helped to start the bail fund program in Nashville in June 2016. Since then, it has freed more than 100 people, 97 percent of whom have returned to court, according to Just City.
“Nearly all of the people we have freed were charged with low-level offenses and were being detained for one reason and one reason alone – they and their families lacked the resources to pay bail,” said Gicola Lane, who will continue in her role as Nashville bail reform advocate and manager of the fund. “Almost without exception, they have returned to court and answered to the charges against them. The current system is not fair to them or to the broader Nashville community, and it must change.”
The Nashville bail fund was one of the first community-based bail funds in the South “and exists to challenge the wealth-based system of pre-trial detention used by the vast majority of criminal justice systems.”
“We will continue to seek community-based solutions to the problems presented by the criminal justice system, and we have no doubt that the fund and its leadership will relentlessly pursue bail reform for the Nashville community,” said Daniel Kiel, Just City’s board chairman.