• National Association for Public Defense
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    "When injustice becomes law, resistance becomes duty." -Thomas Jefferson
    •  On May 13, 2015, NAPD issues a Policy Statement on the Predatory Collection of Costs, Fines and Fees in America's Criminal Courts, calling for an end to assessing excessive fines and fees to fund government operations. The collection of costs, fines, and fees in criminal courts is predatory in nature and an economic failure. These practices impact poor people in catastrophic and life altering ways and are disproportionately levied against people of color.
    •  As the jury exited the room, Mr. Sanchez frantically asked me, “Can I thank them?” I told him sure, so he stood up with me, the first time during the trial, and he, in his booming voice, was finally heard: “Thank you everyone! That was a fair result.” I told Mr. Sanchez that I’d go out to the hallway to talk to the jury; before I left, he said, “tell them I love them.” I returned to Mr. Sanchez’s side; he firmly shook my hand, thanking me profusely. He expressed gratitude and wished he could pay me. I told him that the experience with him was priceless, that I was grateful for his trust and to represent him, that he was someone I’d never forget.
    •  This new research shows public defenders in a South-Eastern state have better knowledge of the science on child witness reliability than jury-eligible laypeople (a sample of college students) but not as good as forensic psychologists. Defenders should consider improving training in this area, retention of experts when needed, and the limited knowledge of the average juror.
    •  We believe that all members of the community deserve to have their human rights respected, and we hold ourselves accountable to support all parts of the current movement for Black lives, including organic uprisings. Our work backs the needs of activists and organizers, from getting and keeping them out of jail, to supporting the writing and implementation of policies to fuel systemic change at the local and national levels.

    Contributing Authors

    mutual aid

    Our community includes brilliant men and women with a diversity of specializations, interests, and experiences. NAPD is a collection of individuals dedicated to public defense and the right to counsel connecting directly to share knowledge, brainstorm challenges, and offer support.

    you're the expert

    No one understands public defense better than the thousands of men and women across the country who engage in the work on a daily basis. Through the unified voice of NAPD, we will at last claim our rightful position as experts regarding the right to counsel and the systems designed to provide that valuable right.

    stronger together

    The men and women who dedicate their professional lives to public defense must serve as the catalysts for change. Through NAPD, we will speak with one voice for our clients and their constitutional right to counsel.