Unsanitary and overpopulated jail conditions have become a hot topic since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has spurred counties and states across the country to look for chances to lower their jail and prison populations. Some states have chosen to reduce bail amounts or even completely waive the bail for low-risk arrestees with the goal of keeping the remaining inmates as safe as possible.
Bail reform has been on the table for a long time, but what happens when it goes wrong? In the case of New York, attempts to improve jail conditions could come at the cost of public safety. Here’s what went wrong with New York’s attempt at bail reform and what we can learn from it.
The Basics of Bail
When you’re arrested, you have two options: stay in jail until your trial is concluded or get bailed out at some point along the way. The cost of bail varies for different crimes and circumstances, but bail is generally more expensive than many Americans can afford. Bail bond agencies, like A-EZ Out, can help cut your bail down to 10% of what it was so you can pay it and get back to your life. However, many inmates have to remain in jail for one reason or another. It could be that they were denied bail or couldn’t afford to pay their bail bond, even with an agency’s help.
Backlash Against New York’s Bail Reform
Bail reform advocates believe the bail system is discriminatory against lower income populations. After all, why should someone have to stay in an unsanitary and often overcrowded jail just because they don’t have much money at the time of their arrest?
With this sentiment in mind, New York passed bail reform policies at the beginning of 2020 that even the most loyal bail reform advocates weren’t okay with. Their new rules allowed nearly any inmate with a non-violent record, as well as inmates facing misdemeanor charges, to get out of jail without a bail bond. Shortly after the new policy was established, the New York Police Department revealed that criminal activity had spiked and said bail reform was at fault.
What can we Learn?
It’s important to take steps towards reducing jail populations during the pandemic, but New York’s approach to bail reform has been messy and far too lenient. It’s clear that, for bail reform to work the way it’s supposed to, there needs to be a lot more regulation involved.
24/7 Bail Bonds With A-EZ Out
Staying in jail after an arrest could cause you to miss out on important obligations like work, school, bills, and time with your family. If you’ve been arrested in Dallas, Denton, Tarrant, or Collin County, A-EZ Out can help. We’re available 24/7 to bail you out of jail at any time, and our talented bail bondsmen are dedicated to getting you back to your life as soon as possible after an arrest. Call or visit our website to get in touch with A-EZ Out today!