Houston Matters

Hickman and Ellis Discuss Preventing Deaths in the Harris County Jail

Posted on · The Houston Chronicle recently reported that there have been five deaths in the last year at the Harris County Jail during Sheriff Ron Hickman’s tenure. The most recent death — due to head trauma — happened while the inmate was being processed in a holding cell. The incident has sparked an inquiry from the U.S Department of […]

Houston Matters

Officials: Bail System Contributes to Overcrowded Jails

Posted on · We explore recent calls for comprehensive bail reform. Some argue judges under the current system are contributing to overcrowded jails by setting bonds too high, leaving defendants accused of low-level crimes who may pose no flight risk or threat to society imprisoned, simply because they can’t afford to post bail. We talk it over with […]

Houston Matters

Bill Would Allow Women to Sue Their Employers Over Equal Pay

Posted on · State Senator Rodney Ellis, a Houston Democrat, has filed Senate Bill 65, which would allow Texas women to sue private businesses if they find out they’re not getting paid equally for similar jobs, regardless of when they learn about the salary discrepancy. Sound familiar? It should. It’s the same concept covered in the federal Lily […]

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Indigent Caseloads, Michael Morton, and Third Ward Mural: Houston Matters for Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015

Posted on · You’ve heard this part of the Miranda rights before (if not in person, then at least on TV crime dramas): “You have a right to an attorney. If you cannot afford one, one will be provided for you…” Well, a lot of defendants can’t afford attorneys. That’s where public defenders come in, and sometimes private […]