Uptrust raises $2M to fight the billions of dollars wasted on useless mass incarceration



A technical violation is one of those Orwellian terms used by the U.S. government to occlude the absurd morass of process and procedure that is the modern criminal justice system in this country. After an offender has served their sentence, they are often placed under probation, which is accompanied by scores of rules on everything from where the person can go to who they can see. If a person commits a technical violation, they often are sent back to prison — perhaps months or years for an action as simple as being minutes late to a parole hearing.

Technical violations are expensive for all of us. Earlier this year, New York’s capital newspaper the Times Union reported that “New York imprisons more people for technical parole violations than any other state, and at a rate almost three times higher than the national average” and “The re-incarceration of those individuals cost taxpayers at least $683 million…” based on a report by Columbia University and The Independent Commission on New York City Criminal Justice and Incarceration Reform.

It’s Orwellian, and also Kafkaesque. And it’s a disastrous waste of public resources. Yet, it’s also a problem that lends itself to potential solutions, and that’s where Uptrust wants to make a difference.

Uptrust is a service that connects people returning to society with their public defenders and court records, ensuring that they have the calendars, appointments, rules, and procedures they need to avoid technical violations — improving their re-entry into normal life while saving (Read more...)