More Than 50 Groups Urge New Jersey to Expand Jury Service to People with Criminal Convictions Copy

NEWARK – The New Jersey Institute for Social Justice and 51 other social justice advocates – the Jury of Us coalition – sent a letter today to Governor Murphy, Senate President Nicholas Scutari and Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin urging them to support passage into law of A834/S292, without any carve-outs, to end New Jersey’s misguided practice of prohibiting people with criminal convictions for life from serving on juries.

New Jersey bans between 438,000 and 533,000 people of the overall population from serving on juries due to criminal convictions, importing the racism of the criminal justice system into its jury selection process. As a result, between 219,000 to 269,000 Black people in New Jersey are banned from jury service because of a conviction – a staggering 23% to 29% of the state’s overall Black population.

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