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Train Municipal Court, Jail, and City Government Employees in Constitutional Rights

All municipal court, jail, and city government employees shall receive annual cultural bias training and training on how to protect the constitutional rights of residents and defendants, and how to effectively administer courts. Each employee must sign a written acknowledgement upon completion of training. This training shall ensure that personnel adequately understand that the following apply to their activities and duties:

  1. All relevant administrative rules of the Missouri Supreme Court, the applicable judicial circuit court, and the municipal court.
  2. All constitutional and statutory procedural rights afforded to citizens.
  3. All other constitutional protections for citizens, including the requirements that:
    1. Consistent with the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, municipal courts shall not hold a person in custody after an arrest because the person is too poor to post a monetary bond or bail payment.
    2. Municipal courts shall not hold a person in jail for nonpayment at proceedings initiated by the municipality without a meaningful inquiry into the person’s ability to pay (including notice and an opportunity to present evidence) and without the assistance of counsel or an informed waiver of assistance.
    3. Municipal courts shall provide all inmates held in any municipal jail with a toothbrush, toothpaste, hand soap, shower access, reasonably sanitary surroundings, exercise, reading materials, adequate medical care, and nutritious meals. Feminine hygiene products shall be provided to inmates upon request. No person shall be charged any money for any time spent in jail or for the provision of basic needs while in jail.

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FTF Co-Chairs and Community Partners Call for Swift Policy Action

Residents Call for Policy Change, Regional Leaders Must Rise to the Challenge Forward Through Ferguson co-chairs, Rebeccah Bennett and Zachary Boyers, and 30 community partners call on policy and decision makers to deliver swift action on Ferguson Commission Calls to Action.  Read the full statement on Medium, or download a pdf here. “Unfortunately, we’ve been…

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Opportunity for a New Approach to Public Safety in St. Louis

An open letter to Mayor Lyda Krewson from Rebeccah Bennett and Zachary Boyers, Co-chairs of Forward Through Ferguson, on the public safety opportunity in front of our region. Click here to download a pdf of the open letter. Mayor Krewson, The retirement of Police Chief Sam Dotson represents a new day for public safety in St. Louis….

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