Systemic Court Reform

Collaboration for Justice, or CFJ, is a joint effort of the Chicago Council of Lawyers and Chicago Appleseed Fund for Justice. CFJ conducts research on how Cook County's civil and criminal courts are run, and it uses that research to create evidence-based policy proposals designed to make the courts fairer - especially for indigent defendants.

Concrete Action

Students involved in the Northwestern Law chapter of CFJ collect information that gets put to real use by policymakers and attorneys. For instance, last year, students visited courtrooms throughout Chicago to observe how judges assigned public defenders to indigent defendants. Students' observations helped Appleseed develop a report that resulted in new, comprehensive guidelines for indigence hearings in Cook County.


Fellowship: Civil Rights Education and Enforcement Center

The Civil Rights Education and Enforcement Center (CREEC) has announced a new, one-year fellowship at its Denver, CO office. Learn more here!

Algorithmic bond reform

Take a look at this fascinating article in the Reader on using computerized risk-assessments to reform bond decisions!

WBEZ: Illinois Court Fees Prevent Poor From Closing Cases

WBEZ has posted a great story on how fines, fees, and costs levied by Illinois courts can keep offenders perpetually entangled with the justice system.

See more

Get Involved