Court Fees Need to Change; Taxing Justice

wanakita

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Today, the court systems in some American counties and cities are trying to intimidate poor people by charging them with unfair court fees. I believe the police and local government is abusing their power by taxing those charged with crimes. It’s not right for government to charge taxes on poor people who get arrested. According to the 6th, 7th, and 8th  amendments, these citizens are not being treated fairly in the process of a speedy trial.

The Ferguson, Missouri municipal code says that there is a $2 fee for every visit in court.   It also says that all the money collected by court fees goes to a police training program. If the government has so much money why are they paying for their business with poor people’s money? It seems like poor people are more likely to be arrested and they are being forced to pay for their own harassment. Most of poor people barely have money to access their daily food.

Ferguson collected $2.6  billion last year in court fees, and I believe that all those fees came from all poor people around the city. This problem is most likely to affect the poor and colored people because they are more likely to be in court with an all white police force that has not built up trust.   In most jails prisoners are now charged for some thing that before they were free for them. Prisoners may be obligated to pay for a public defender.  The injustice is being made known and now the government said that people cannot be sent to jail just because they are to poor to pay court fees.

Members of the city council propose cutting heavy court fees, but they still are arguing about it. They say they are waiting for it to become clear as they vote.I believe that it could really help a lot of people if they could cut those heavy  fees. Poor people barely have enough money to put food on their family’s table. Unfortunately the only reason I believe that they are trying to cut court fee is to not be bothered by peoples protests.

http://www.npr.org/2014/09/10/347305791/how-court-fees-became-an-emotional-issue-in-ferguson-mo

 

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