Wishing you a happy new year! When the Detroit Justice Center opened its doors last April, we began building our vision of a more just city–a city where everyone is valued, cared for, and empowered. Since then, we have accomplished so much.
We have served over 200 clients. Each day, our attorneys fight to help our clients remain out of prison, hold onto jobs and stable housing, and keep their families intact.
Our Economic Equity Practice has helped to create or sustain 3 small businesses run by people impacted by incarceration, produced 4 units of affordable housing, and helped our clients acquire 3 lots of land.
We launched Detroit’s first bail fund in partnership with The Bail Project and have bailed out over 72 clients since June. More than 22 of our clients have had their cases closed.
We sued Wayne County in federal court to defend the public’s right to seek a referendum on whether we should issue bonds to build a new jail.
We hosted a Restorative Justice Youth Design Summit where Detroit teens created powerful solutions for what we could build in place of a jail to promote safety and well-being.
We’ve hosted two national gatherings of movement leaders–one with activists working to close or block jails in their cities, and another with lawyers looking to infuse their work with more creativity, joy, and imagination.
We couldn’t have achieved any of this without your help. In supporting our work, you’ve provided legal services for incarcerated people to transition back to their communities more easily. You’ve invested in helping Detroiters avoid tax foreclosure. You’ve changed the lives of people who would otherwise sit in jail awaiting trial because they can’t afford bail. You’ve created careers in Detroit for lawyers and legal advocates through permanent positions, externships, clinical opportunities, and post-grad fellowships at DJC. In short, your support makes Detroit more equitable and just, and brings us closer to a society beyond jails and prisons.
Thank you again for being behind us, and for championing all that we do. I can’t wait for all the growth, creativity, laughter, and impact that 2019 has in store!
Wishing you all the best in the new year,
Founder & Executive Director, Detroit Justice Center