It’s very possible you have been hearing a lot about the American Bail Coalition (ABC) recently. With on-going efforts to reduce or eliminate the use of money bail in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, New Jersey, New Mexico and Utah, ABC has had a full plate. Wherever the use of commercial bail has been in jeopardy ABC has been there to advocate, testify and educate local officials and decision makers on the efficacy of bail bonds.
The American Bail Coalition was formed in 2001 as a continuation of the National Association of Bail Underwriters (NABIC). Today ABC members include the majority of the largest and most prestigious surety bail underwriters in the Nation.
While ABC has always been known as a bail surety company association, the ABC Board recently approved an Agent Affiliate Membership level aimed at incorporating the knowledge and expertise of retail bail agents into ABC’s efforts to preserve the use of commercial bail. Bail agents who are currently affiliated with an active ABC Member Surety Company are eligible to become an Affiliate Agent Member.
This is a significant development. ABC expends more time and financial resources working to develop and implement best practices and strategies to address jail crowding and failures to appear than any other bail association in the country. Without the sustained efforts of ABC – as well as state and local associations -the intrinsic value of commercial bail would go undefended. We would be out of business.
ABC continues to work with state and local associations on matters of legislation and policy to ensure a coordinated effort is being put forth to protect the use of bail bonds to guarantee defendants appearance in court.
ABC has a tremendous staff experienced in working with public officials, lobbyists and impacting public policy decisions. The bail industry is enduring a level of assault on its very existence not seen before. Efforts are ongoing by parties who would see the use of secured release eliminated and to keep offenders in jail without bond until trial. Lawsuits, legislation and constitutional amendments are the avenues taken by the adversaries of the Eight Amendment and Public Safety. The members of ABC stand in their way.
If you are a licensed bail agent with an affiliation with an ABC member company I encourage you to contact your surety representative today to inquire about becoming an ABC Affiliate Agent Member. If your surety company is not currently a member of ABC, encourage them to join and participate in a collective effort to keep commercial surety bail in place as a vital component of the criminal justice system. This only works if we all work together.
Visit AMERICANBAIL.org for more information about ABC.