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Vote NO on Prop 25
Written by Sacramento politicians, Prop 25 eliminates the right to post bail for every Californian. Instead of having the option to secure your release through bail or a pretrial release program administered by the counties, Prop 25 requires the use of computer-based profiling based on algorithms to determine who can and can’t get out of jail pending their trials. These computer algorithms, managed by government bureaucrats, replace the role of judges in our current system.

Imagine trying to help a loved one accused of a crime secure their release in order to answer the charges against them – and having their freedom depend on computer algorithms and predictive models that have been shown to be racially biased. Without a judge to set bail or the terms of release, important criminal justice decisions will be at the mercy of the bureaucracy and biased computer formulas.

Californians deserve better – Join the coalition to defeat Prop 25!

Prop 25: UNFAIR

Prop 25 Creates Additional Bias Against Minorities and the Poor

Prop 25 uses computer algorithms to determine who does and doesn’t get released before trial, leading to more biased outcomes than our current bail system. Working poor and minorities likely will face more discrimination, not less, under this new system.
The ACLU has said that these algorithms neither “provide sufficient due process nor adequately protect against racial biases and disparities,” and that their use “compromises our fundamental values of due process and racial justice.” Even the Pretrial Justice Institute, a longtime advocate for bail reform, recently declared that the algorithms-based system created by Prop 25 “can no longer be a part of our solution for building equitable pretrial justice systems.”

Civil rights organizations like the NAACP oppose the use of algorithms because they create more biased outcomes against people of color, and twenty-seven experts in the fields of statistics, machine learning, artificial intelligence and law from MIT, Harvard, Princeton, NYU, and other leading institutions said that using algorithms to determine pretrial risk raises grave concerns. Even tech leaders like Google, Facebook and Amazon – who use algorithms in their business – have come out against their use to make determinations on risk assessment because they lead to more biased outcomes for poor and minority defendants.

Algorithms might work for recommending songs, movies and other consumer interests but are biased and flawed when it comes to justice, bank loans and other sensitive and personal matters.

Prop 25 Denies a U.S. Constitutional Right

If Prop 25 passes, people could remain locked up indefinitely as bureaucrats face backlogs in service. Like other overburdened government bureaucracies such as the DMV, delays in the justice system could keep people locked up for days, if not weeks. Prop 25 eliminates the quickest pretrial release option for every Californian. The 8th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution – part of the Bill of Rights – prohibits the courts from imposing excessive bail, and bail is a fundamental right of the accused and is available to almost everyone.

Prop 25: UNSAFE

Prop 25 Puts Our Public Safety at Risk

Prop 25 puts more burdens on our already overburdened police and sheriff’s departments, who would be responsible for ensuring defendants appear in court. Without bail, many defendants who don’t show up for court or leave their jurisdiction will remain on the streets, putting our communities’ safety at risk.

The first month after New York curtailed its use of bail, major crimes spiked in New York City, with the NYC Police Commissioner citing bail reform as a driver behind the increase in crime.

California’s recent experiment with “zero bail” during the coronavirus pandemic was disastrous, with many defendants arrested, released, and rearrested multiple times in one day. Prop 25 would make zero bail permanent, which is why law enforcement across the state say NO on Prop 25.

Prop 25 Deprives Justice for Victims of Crime

Bail helps provide justice to crime victims by ensuring people who are accused of a crime show up for their court appearances, holding defendants accountable for their actions. Leading victim advocates like Crime Victims United, Crime Survivors, and KlassKids Foundation oppose Prop 25 because it takes away the accountability and incentive to show up for trial.

“Prop 25 destroys one of the best tools our communities have to make sure defendants appear and face their day in court.”

– Christine Ward, Executive Director, Crime Victims Alliance

Prop 25 Overburdens Local Law Enforcement

Prop 25 puts an even bigger workload on our already overburdened police and sheriff’s departments, making them responsible for ensuring defendants appear in court. Without bail, many defendants who don’t show up for court or leave their jurisdiction will remain on the streets, endangering communities and depriving crime victims of justice.

“Prop 25 will endanger public safety and makes it harder for police and sheriff’s departments to do our jobs.”

– Chad Bianco, Riverside County Sheriff

Prop 25: COSTLY

Prop 25 Costs Taxpayer Hundreds of Millions of Dollars Each Year

Prop 25 will cost taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars to implement at a time when state and county budgets are facing historic budget cuts due to the coronavirus. Prop 25 will require additional court hearings to overrule a computer’s decision and will increase delays in our already backlogged courts. And the costs to build and administer the new bureaucracy Prop 25 creates will make our current budget crisis worse and lead to even deeper cuts to essential services or require tax increases – which is why county officials and taxpayer advocates say NO on Prop 25.

“Prop 25 will cost state and local governments several hundred million dollars each year. This will force us to cut vital public services or raise taxes, something our local communities can’t afford right now.”

– Sue Frost, Sacramento County Supervisor

Please spread the word to your friends, neighbors and co-workers, and remember to VOTE NO ON PROP 25.
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