We support partner organizations with legal and policy work that distance our clients and their communities from the harshest excesses of the criminal legal system. Often that work happens in the background, and it’s important to us not to take credit for other people’s hard work. Here are some examples of campaigns we’ve supported recently:
TFDP has worked in coalition with organizations including Austin Justice Coalition, Just Liberty, and Texas Appleseed to advocate for divestment, policy changes, and accountability in the Austin Police Department following several APD officers killing unarmed civilians and attacking protesters.
Laws that criminalize people for camping, sitting or lying down unconstitutionally target people experiencing homelessness when other options for shelter are unavailable locally. TFDP has worked with a wide coalition of people and organizations, including people experiencing homelessness, to decriminalize homelessness in our local community of Austin, Texas.
For legal, practical, medical, and ethical reasons, TFDP supports the decriminalization of marijuana in Texas. TFDP has supported successful grassroots campaigns to limit enforcement of marijuana prohibitions indifferent communities in Texas.
In the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, TFDP worked in coalition with other groups to encourage local officials, including sheriffs, judges, and prosecutors to minimize the jail population limit the spread and deadliness of the disease. TFDP also used multiple legal avenues to challenge Governor Abbott's Executive Order GA-13, which has trapped countless people in jails during the pandemic; TFDP has secured the release of 50 people who were being held pursuant to GA-13.