Safety, not money or race, will be the guiding factor to determine who must stay in jail before they go to trial. The bail reform law balances safety, fairness, and the rights of defendants and victims, and no one who is a safety risk can use bail to buy their way out of jail just because they are wealthy.
The bail reform law creates a fairer system that doesn’t base freedom on the ability to pay but on the public safety risk of the defendant.
There are roughly 46,000 people awaiting trial in local jails, costing the State of California $5 million a day. Many of the defendents are not a safety risk to the public.
Under the current system, people arrested for minor, non-violent offenses who can’t afford to buy a bail bond must wait - sometimes weeks or months - for their court date, separated from their friends and family by the bars of a jail cell.
Meanwhile, wealthy individuals charged with serious violent crimes can walk free - no matter how much of a threat they are to public safety.
Those who do manage to scrape together enough cash to buy a bail bond for their loved one will never get that money back - even if their case is dropped or they are found innocent.
This non-refundable fee costs 10% of the total bond amount, leaving California families on the hook for $5,000 on average.
Without cash, borrowing money to cover the fee can be an even riskier option - with bail bondsmen often requiring people to give up their car or even their home as collateral or down payment.
Among all the people in America’s jails, accused of a crime and waiting for their court date, 89% are there because they can’t afford bail. Many end up losing their livelihoods, which drives recidivism and threatens their families’ health and well-being due to the sudden loss of income.
The for-profit bail system sends the accused and their loved ones into severe debt and emotional distress. We know families can’t thrive when family members are handing over the titles of their cars or homes over to the bail industry. The American Bail Cartel runs a cold hard cash business and they’ll stop at nothing to keep their gravy train running.
That’s why the money bail industry has spent $1.7 million to lobby California lawmakers to block any reforms and an additional $3.2 million in direct campaign contributions.
Even when innocent people die at the hands of their reckless bounty hunters - the industry doesn’t care. They will do anything to protect their profits.
The bail industry’s pockets are deep, and they are prepared to spend millions of dollars to roll back California’s progress and protect their bottom line. We need your help to reach as many California voters as possible. Will you sign up to share our stories with your friends and family?