Criminal Justice Reform

End police brutality

The issues of mass incarceration, sentencing disparities, and police violence have drastic impacts on our communities — and are both the result of, and perpetuate, the racial injustice that is the long legacy of white supremacy in this country.

Criminal justice reform speaks to our imperative as Jews to stand up against oppression and work to achieve a more peaceful and just society. The Jewish community can and must take action.

Current Focus: Money Bail Reform in California

All too often, Californians facing charges are given a terrible choice: Pay an unaffordable amount of money for their pre-trial freedom or sit in jail for the foreseeable future. Since the median bail amount in California is $50,000, it’s no wonder only one in ten people can afford to pay. In fact, 63% of people currently incarcerated in county jails aren’t convicted of anything—they’re just waiting for their trials to begin. Keeping so many people locked up is expensive, costing taxpayers $5 million every year.

The California Money Bail Reform Act of 2017 (SB10) will fundamentally restructure and reform California’s cruel, unjust, and immoral money bail system. It will help insure that no one is detained behind bars pre-trial simply for being unable to afford bail. In addition to making our system more fair and equitable, and it will save the California taxpayers millions.

For the last year, Bend the Arc leaders across California have educated our community, organized lobby visits, gathered letters of support, phone banked alongside our coalition partners, and more to help reform California’s broken money bail system. Because of our coalition’s work, the groundbreaking CA Money Bail Reform Act (SB10) went further than we thought it could this legislative session, and Governor Brown and California Supreme Court Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye came out in support of the bill.

Now, we’re working with our partners to make sure the strongest version of this crucial reform passes in the next legislative session. Take action now by signing and sharing our petition.

Want to get involved in the fight to reform money bail? Contact our Bay Area Organizer or our Southern California Organizer.

Making Progress: Key Wins for Criminal Justice Reform

Over the past several years, Bend the Arc's campaign teams and volunteer leaders have won several victories for criminal justice reform in their communities, including:

In The News

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The system of money bail in California is profoundly and profanely unjust, especially for poor people and communities of color. Our Jewish tradition calls on us to challenge injustice wherever it...


Bend the Arc leaders in California have been working tirelessly as part of a growing movement to reform the state’s broken criminal justice system. Following breakthroughs in recent elections, we...