Advocating for Justice in Our Courts
This spring court workers flooded the halls of our state capital to advocate for those seeking justice.
As court workers and advocates for our communities, we know access to justice is directly tied to income. In the trial court system, when court reporters are not provided, only the wealthy can afford to hire a reporter. Low-income workers, juggling multiple jobs, are unable access justice due to restricted public hours and closed facilities. People who cannot afford money bail often sit awaiting a court date resulting in a loss of income to their household.
Court workers spoke to elected officials and successfully lobbied greater funding for our court system—nearly $200 Million—in this year’s state budget. This includes $10M for hiring court reporters in family law proceedings, $47.8 Million allocated to California’s most underfunded courts, and $25.9 Million for court workers’ benefits.
“As trial court employees and SEIU members, we stood up to protect access to justice and fought to re-invest in core services and court infrastructure when nearly a decade of devastating cuts to our courts hurt the communities who count on them,” said Deanna Simas, a Legal Process Clerk II at Solano Court. “We are glad the Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauyes stands with frontline court workers in the call to restore court houses to their full operating hours and staff, fairly compensate court workers, and reform the bail system.”