The Center Announces Advancing Pretrial Policy and Research: A Project of the National Partnership for Pretrial Justice

The Center for Effective Public Policy (the Center) is proud to announce and lead Advancing Pretrial Policy and Research (APPR), an initiative dedicated to achieving fair, just, and effective pretrial practices, every day, throughout the nation. APPR will provide training, research, and implementation assistance nationally to jurisdictions committed to improving their pretrial practices.

APPR is a project of the National Partnership for Pretrial Justice (NPPJ) (pretrialpartnership.org), a new grant-funded community funded by Arnold Ventures and dedicated to reducing unjust and unnecessary pretrial detention. NPPJ is a group of more than 30 research, technical assistance, policy, and advocacy organizations that will work to advance pretrial justice across the country.

On any given day, our nation’s jails hold 750,000 people, the vast majority of whom are presumed innocent and awaiting trial. Current pretrial practices are expensive, costing taxpayers $14 billion annually to jail people not convicted of a crime.

The human cost is incalculable, destabilizing families, jeopardizing housing and employment, and often resulting in guilty pleas and longer sentences.

Many people are held in jail pretrial because they cannot pay money bail – even amounts as small as $500 or less. Worse, research shows people of color receive higher bail amounts and are more likely to be detained than similarly-situated white people.

APPR, a collaboration of more than a dozen organizations and individuals with diverse expertise, will offer assistance to jurisdictions across the country to examine their pretrial systems and identify improvements that simultaneously prioritize public safety, equity, and harm reduction.

Ten local communities, selected through a competitive process, will receive intensive research, training, and policy assistance to implement risk assessment and other pretrial advancements. Online training and implementation assistance will be available to hundreds of other communities. APPR also will make the Public Safety Assessment, a pretrial risk assessment, accessible through online resources at psapretrial.org.

APPR is led by the Center for Effective Public Policy, along with a team of subject matter experts and consultants, including the following partner organizations:

APPR will work closely with RTI International and Stanford Computational Policy Lab, also members of the NPPJ, to research the impact of these efforts.

As a member of NPPJ, the work and learnings of the APPR project will be shared with the field and directly inform pretrial scholarship, practice, and policy. The APPR team is excited to work alongside other NPPJ members committed to improving pretrial justice across the country. For a complete list of NPPJ members and more details about the National Partnership, please visit www.pretrialpartnership.org.

For more information about APPR, contact initiative Co-Directors Alison Shames (ashames@cepp.com) or Mimi Carter (cartermm@cepp.com).