Statement on Alexander Spencer Shooting

PHILADELPHIA—”The Defender Association of Philadelphia sends its condolences to Alexander Spencer’s family, friends and community. We join the public call for a thorough and transparent investigation into the incident that led to his death on January 26.

 

“As public defenders, we know it’s a mistake to jump to conclusions before all the evidence has come to light. But what’s been reported so far sounds too similar to tragedies that have played out in Philly and across the country–right down to the police narrative that seems to shift with every new piece of information revealed.

 

“Every time there’s an incident like this, it creates more mistrust between the police and the neighborhoods they’re sworn to protect. If we want our communities to be safe, we need to explore and invest in interventions that help reduce, not increase, the number of interactions between law enforcement and our communities.

 

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Chief Defender Congratulates Mayor-Elect Cherelle Parker

PHILADELPHIA–“On behalf of the staff and Board of Directors of the Defender Association of Philadelphia, I congratulate Mayor-elect Cherelle Parker on becoming the first woman–and first Black woman–to be elected Mayor of Philadelphia.

 

The Defender Association looks forward to a positive and productive partnership with the Parker administration, as well as our new City Councilmembers, as we work to address the challenges facing our public defenders, clients and communities.

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2023 Voter Info Resources

Election Day is November 7, 2023. There are some very important Municipal and Judicial races this year, and the outcome will likely shape the future of our city and our justice system.

 

Here are some websites with some helpful information about the various races and candidates* Inform yourself about the candidates and remember to vote on November 7!

 

 

*We are sharing this information as a resource. The Defender Association of Philadelphia does not endorse candidates in elections. 

In Memory of YASP Co-Founder Josh Glenn

The Defender Association of Philadelphia joins the thousands of our city’s young people, activists and community members in mourning the sudden passing of YASP co-founder Josh Glenn. Josh was an incredible leader and advocate. Among his many achievements was the establishment of the nation’s first Youth Participatory Defense Hub, right here in Philadelphia. Any progress we’ve made toward reforming our juvenile justice system would not be possible without his efforts and leadership.

There are few individuals—or organizations, for that matter—who have positively impacted as many young lives as Josh Glenn. Though our thoughts and our hearts are with his family at this time, this is a loss for the entire city of Philadelphia.

Memorial Services will be held on Thursday, August 24, at Monumental Baptist Church (4948 Locust St). The viewing will be at 9AM, with the service to begin at 10AM. The service will also be live-streamed on Monumental Baptist Church’s Facebook page.

Josh Glenn Memorial Fund Info

 

April is 2nd Chance Month!

[vc_row css=”.vc_custom_1681910648375{padding-top: 20px !important;padding-bottom: 20px !important;background-color: #ffffff !important;}”][vc_column][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner][vc_column_text]April is 2nd chance month, and at the Defender, giving our clients a second chance at a better future is a year-long mission!

In addition to providing high-quality legal representation in the courtroom, we offer opportunities and information on criminal record expungements and probation terminations. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][vc_empty_space height=”64px”][vc_tta_tabs color=”blue” spacing=”10″ alignment=”center” active_section=”0″][vc_tta_section title=”Adult Expungements” tab_id=”adultexpunge”][vc_column_text]

Adult Criminal Record Expungements

Expungement request are the primary request from our Philadelphia community. At every community event we attend we offer one-on-one expungement clinics with our staff attorneys. In 2019 alone, we filed 405 new expungement petitions and saw 438 of our petitions granted by the courts.

An expungement is an order that requires state and local criminal justice agencies to erase something from a record. We offer our clients the opportunity to apply for criminal record expungements using via our website. Defender attorneys also do in-person expungement applications at public events like Defender Days, criminal justice workshops, block parties and more.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space][dt_default_button link=”url:https%3A%2F%2Fphillydefenders.com%2Fexpungement|||” size=”medium” button_alignment=”btn_center”]LEARN MORE ABOUT ADULT EXPUNGEMENTS[/dt_default_button][/vc_tta_section][vc_tta_section title=”Juvenile Record Expungement” tab_id=”juvenileexpunge”][vc_column_text]

Juvenile Record Expungement

Expungement request are the primary request from our Philadelphia community. At every community event we attend we offer one-on-one expungement clinics with our staff attorneys. In 2019 alone, we filed 405 new expungement petitions and saw 438 of our petitions granted by the courts.

An expungement order directs the court to treat the criminal conviction as if it had never occurred, removing it from a person’s public record. These court orders are not automatic – a petition must be filed to start the process. The Defender Association files these petitions for our clients.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space][dt_default_button link=”url:https%3A%2F%2Fphillydefenders.org%2Fjuvenile-expungement%2F|title:Juvenile%20Expungement||” size=”medium” button_alignment=”btn_center”]LEARN MORE ABOUT JUVENILE EXPUNGEMENTS[/dt_default_button][/vc_tta_section][vc_tta_section title=”Probation Termination” tab_id=”probationterm”][vc_column_text]

Probation Termination

The Defender offers probation termination services for clients. To be eligible, clients MUST BE COMPLIANT with their probation conditions, including reporting to their probation officer, attending mandated treatment appointments and paying fines and fees (if able).[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space][dt_default_button link=”url:https%3A%2F%2Fphillydefenders.org%2Fprobation-termination%2F|title:Probation%20Termination||” size=”medium” button_alignment=”btn_center”]APPLY FOR PROBATION TERMINATION HERE[/dt_default_button][/vc_tta_section][/vc_tta_tabs][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Keisha Hudson on “New Thinking” Podcast

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Listen to a snippet from Keisha Hudson here

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_column_text]Chief Defender Keisha Hudson joins Michigan Law’s Eve Primus, and Brooklyn Law Center’s Alexis Hoag-Fordjour to discuss the groundbreaking yet unfulfilled legacy of Gideon v. Wainwright. 

Listen to the full podcast below:[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”20″][vc_raw_html]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[/vc_raw_html][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Social Workers Break Barriers!

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During Social Work Month 2023, watch and learn how the Defender’s team of social workers breaks barriers for our clients and their families!

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Request a Defender for Your Event!

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_btn title=”FILL OUT OUR COMMUNITY EVENT INFO FORM” color=”primary” size=”lg” align=”center” button_block=”true” link=”url:https%3A%2F%2Fforms.gle%2FUymYaW6wNjBCmDyz6||target:%20_blank|”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_empty_space][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Our attorneys and staff are in the community, doing everything from conducting “Know Your Systems” workshops to taking criminal record expungement applications. You can join us at our own events, like Shop Talks and Community Office Hours, or find our table at block parties and other community events.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_empty_space][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row full_height=”yes” bg_type=”image” parallax_style=”vcpb-default” bg_image_new=”id^147294|url^https://phillydefenders.org//www/wp-content/uploads/2023/03/A1439611-53E8-4066-A44A-2556950A3E5F.jpg|caption^null|alt^null|title^A1439611-53E8-4066-A44A-2556950A3E5F|description^null” bg_image_repeat=”no-repeat” bg_image_size=”contain” bg_img_attach=”fixed”][vc_column][vc_empty_space height=”300″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_empty_space][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]If you or your organization has an upcoming event, and you would like the Defender Association to provide resources and info for your attendees, please fill out our request form so we can add it to our calendar![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_empty_space][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_btn title=”FILL OUT OUR COMMUNITY EVENT INFO FORM” color=”primary” size=”lg” align=”center” button_block=”true” link=”url:https%3A%2F%2Fforms.gle%2FUymYaW6wNjBCmDyz6||target:%20_blank|”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Keisha Hudson on Gov. Shapiro’s Budget Proposal

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]“Governor Shapiro’s proposal to invest $10 million in state funds to indigent defense is welcome news for public defenders, and the clients we represent across the Commonwealth.

“As the Governor pointed out in his budget address, ‘Pennsylvania is one of only two states in the nation that provides zero dollars for indigent defense. That’s not a list we want to be on.’

“The Defender Association of Philadelphia wholeheartedly agrees with the Governor on this. Even if this investment is made–and we truly hope the legislature approves this–it is far from the funding needed for Pennsylvania’s public defense system to be on truly firm footing. However, this investment represents an unprecedented acknowledgment of the importance of our collective work as public defenders.”

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Keisha Hudson on First Year of Driving Equality Law

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Driving Equality has had a significant impact in cutting down racially-motivated pretextual stops, and no negative impact on public safety.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_empty_space][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]PHILADELPHIA–“The Defender Association of Philadelphia joins Councilmember Isaiah Thomas in celebration of the one year anniversary of the Driving Equality Law, and thanks him for his vision and leadership in making this law a reality in Philadelphia.

“I also want to highlight the Defender’s Police Accountability Unit for the outstanding work they’ve done to compile and analyze the data that guides the purpose of this law–reducing the number of unnecessary, negative encounters between police and community members. The data is clear: Driving Equality has had a significant impact in cutting down racially-motivated pretextual stops, while having no negative impact on public safety.

“To truly appreciate Driving Equality, we should look beyond what the law does, and celebrate the thoughtful, evidence-based and collaborative approach to its creation. Driving Equality didn’t just happen–it is the culmination of months of debate, discussion and collaboration between City leaders, the Defender Association, the police and the community. Driving Equality is being studied and replicated by other American cities because it’s a great example of a ‘good government’ law that takes a balanced, data-driven approach to public safety and racial justice.

“The Defender Association is proud to be recognized for our subject matter expertise in this area, and are thankful for the opportunity we’ve been given to work with Councilmember Thomas and his team on this now nationally recognized model legislation.

“We’re committed to working together with elected leaders, justice system and community stakeholders on future endeavors to increase trust and cooperation between Philadelphia residents and institutions.

“We’re thrilled to be celebrating one year of Driving Equality, and hope that this law is the first of many legislative initiatives aimed at making Philadelphia a more just and safe city.”

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