A Simple Step To Greater Justice

Making the justice system more just isn’t always about tectonic shifts. Sometimes, small changes can make a big difference.

Column (Massachusetts)

Yvonne Abraham
Boston Globe
January 19, 2019

Tags: Access to Justice, Courts

Organizations mentioned/involved: Massachusetts Appleseed Center for Law and Justice


Similar scenes unfold daily in 56 court facilities across Massachusetts. Legal advocates say cellphone bans — which exist in some courthouses and not others — get in the way of justice. Separating people from their phones puts additional burdens on those who don’t have attorneys and need information on their phones to support their cases. It also affects those who need to reach employers, baby sitters, and rides as their visits to courthouses drag on.

“What seems like an inconvenience is actually a serious barrier to accessing justice for people who don’t have attorneys representing them,” said Jake Hofstetter of the Massachusetts Appleseed Center for Law and Justice, which issued a report on the ban last summer.