Imagine being incarcerated and getting paid $0.50 a day.
Upon your release, you’re required to pay off hundreds or thousands in court debt that you might not even know you have. If you fail to appear in court for whatever reason (your kid is sick, you have to go to work, the courts moved your date without notifying you, etc.), a $125 bench warrant is automatically issued, pushing you into even more financial hardship. If you miss a payment, the courts issue a warrant, without ever notifying you. You might not know until you get arrested at a routine traffic stop, with your kids in the backseat.
Community members dealing with court debt are at risk of losing more than just their freedom for failure to pay- they’re at risk of losing their families, homes and jobs.
We are so happy to have finally raised enough money to open up our Community Court Debt Fund to the public. You can apply for any kind of criminal case-related debt in Rhode Island. Funds are not guaranteed and are based on availability. The Behind the Walls Committee reviews funding requests and will prioritize restitution payments and folks who have warrants. Share, apply, and keep donating! Much love to everybody who helped us get this off the ground, including Kristine Mar for her work on our new logo!