The UCLA Law COVID-19 Behind Bars Data Project, in collaboration with the Bronx Defenders, Columbia Law School’s Center for Institutional and Social Change and Zealous, has launched a new electronic database of COVID-19-related materials designed to help lawyers, advocates, researchers, journalists and others interested in challenging, remedying, or drawing attention to the grave risk that COVID-19 poses to individuals who are detained.
The database is a project of “Health Is Justice,” a decarceration resource toolkit. This collaboration builds off the pre-existing UCLA Law COVID-19 Behind Bars Data Project database tracking court orders and filings, will track additional categories and ultimately provide vastly improved searchability.
The first phase of the new project-- a public spreadsheet tracking hundreds of COVID-19 related decisions--is live. The database flags a number of salient features of decisions relevant to advocates, including pre-existing health conditions, the legal basis for claims, defenses raised, whether an individual has COVID-19, past criminal convictions, conditions of release and outcomes. Each decision is also accompanied by a short summary.
The second phase of the project will include more detailed advanced search functions, a more user-friendly platform, and a database of example briefs similarly categorized, with relevant information about the nature of claims and individuals involved.
Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or suggestions, to facilitate sharing your own COVID-19 related briefing or regarding decisions that you do not yet see in the database.