Advancing Pretrial Policy and Research (APPR)


APPR is an ambitious five-year project to achieve fair, just, equitable pretrial practices that positively impact people, systems, and communities. We do this by supporting and engaging pretrial professionals and community members in the meaningful delivery of data-informed pretrial policies and practices. CEPP leads APPR in collaboration with more than a dozen organizations with diverse expertise in pretrial justice, policy development, research, implementation science, and communication. APPR is supported by Arnold Ventures.

Our Approach

Implementing and sustaining effective pretrial improvements requires deliberate, systemic, collaborative processes among all partners and stakeholders. These include the broader community and people most directly impacted by the pretrial system. APPR takes a comprehensive approach to this work. We assist jurisdictions by helping them form collaborative teams, establish a vision, center equity, engage the community, understand pretrial law and research, develop impactful policies, measure outcomes, communicate to the public, and continuously review and improve pretrial practices.

APPR activities include:

  • Providing technical assistance and online support to dozens of jurisdictions implementing a range of pretrial improvements, including the Public Safety Assessment
  • Supporting jurisdictions to develop proactive communications strategies designed to build broader, more engaged local constituencies who support pretrial improvements
  • Managing the APPR website and developing pretrial resources that provide practical guidance for studying, planning for, and implementing pretrial improvements
  • Managing the APPR Community, where pretrial practitioners ask questions, share their experiences, and connect with peers
  • Offering an array of free virtual trainings that cover a broad range of pretrial topics
  • Through APPR’s independent research partner, RTI International, conducting research and evaluation of selected jurisdictions

The Impact

Through the APPR initiative, CEPP is creating a model for pretrial improvements that is sustainable and systemic, and that contributes to culture change. We are also transforming criminal legal system technical assistance with a deep, ongoing focus on advancing racial equity through knowledge about structural racism, meaningful community engagement, and data-driven work designed to transform policies and practices.

APPR is building a national community of practice, connecting pretrial practitioners with each other and with equity, community engagement, research, and communications experts. Thousands of people access the APPR website for reliable information and resources about pretrial justice, like the APPR Roadmap for Pretrial Advancement, the APPR Pretrial Language Guide, and APPR’s series of Pretrial Research Summaries. Through nationwide training sessions and workshops led by APPR staff, pretrial practitioners gain the knowledge they need to implement improvements in their own jurisdictions.

CEPP’s work through APPR sparks a transformative approach to pretrial justice with practical resources, rigorous research, and clearly articulated models for jurisdictions to follow.