Advancing Pretrial Policy and Research (APPR)


APPR is an ambitious 5-year project to achieve fair, just, effective pretrial practices every day, nationwide. We demonstrate equitable improvements in pretrial outcomes through high-fidelity implementation and comprehensive research on 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 impacted most directly by the pretrial system. CEPP takes a comprehensive approach to this work. Its assistance to jurisdictions includes the following elements: having a collaborative team, establishing a vision, centering equity, engaging the community, understanding pretrial law and research, developing impactful policies, measuring outcomes, communicating to the public, and continuously reviewing and improving pretrial practices. 

APPR activities include:

  • Intensive technical assistance for seven jurisdictions implementing the Public Safety Assessment (PSA) and other pretrial improvements
  • Rigorous research and evaluation, including measuring racial disparities, to identify opportunities for more effective policies and practices
  • Limited technical assistance and robust online support to dozens of jurisdictions committed to examining their pretrial system and implementing the PSA
  • Supporting jurisdictions to develop proactive communications strategies designed to build broader, more engaged local constituencies who support pretrial improvements
  • Managing the APPR website and APPR Community and developing a series of online resources to support jurisdictions interested in pretrial improvements 
  • Offering training and assistance to jurisdictions nationwide
  • Sharing research findings to advance effective pretrial practices across the U.S.

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 justice 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. And, we are building a national community of practice, connecting pretrial practitioners with each other and with experts in equity, community engagement, research, advocacy, and communications. Thousands of people access the APPR website for reliable information about pretrial justice and the Public Safety Assessment. APPR staff lead nationwide training sessions and workshops, helping pretrial practitioners gain the knowledge they need to implement improvements in their jurisdiction. Resources published by APPR, like the Glossary of Pretrial Terms and Glossary of Racial Equity and Community Engagement Terms, contribute to the way people talk about pretrial justice and racial equity. APPR’s series of Pretrial Research Summaries educate the field about effective pretrial supervision strategies. And, APPR’s implementation guides enable jurisdictions to use the PSA with fidelity and accuracy. APPR staff serve as media spokespeople and authors in an effort to explain the comprehensive approach needed to truly reform the pretrial justice system. CEPP’s work through APPR will spark a transformative approach to pretrial justice with practical resources, rigorous research, and clearly articulated models for jurisdictions to follow.