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New Tools for Criminal Justice Reporting: A Workshop on Statistics and Storytelling – June 12 & 13, 2017


Center on Media, Crime and Justice at John Jay College of Criminal Justice and Measures for Justice


Are you interested in learning how to use a brand new investigative tool that will change the way you cover criminal justice?….

You may have already heard about Measures for Justice’s new online Data Portal, which will be launched this month, and is designed to measure and compare the performance of county justice systems.

The Portal already features data from Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Utah, North Carolina, Florida, and Washington, with more states on the way. The data address three criminal justice system goals: public safety; fiscal responsibility; and fair process, and can all be broken down by race/ethnicity; sex; age; indigent status; attorney type; and offense severity. They will be a treasure trove for practitioners and legislators, advocacy groups and reporters who want to get a real picture of how their local justice system is working and what has to be done for its improvement.

This is why we are conducting a special seminar at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City on June 12-13 to introduce journalists to the Measures for Justice Data Portal, and provide hands-on training on how to apply it to reporting projects. The tool is designed for the “layperson”­not academics. (You don’t need a degree in statistics to use it.)

We will be selecting up to 30 journalists, primarily in the six states where the initial data has been collected. Experts and practitioners at the seminar will point you towards how to turn the stats available in the Portal into compelling stories.  Since space is at a premium, if you think this seminar will be important to your reporting, I encourage you to apply as soon as possible at this link. The deadline for applying is Monday, May 22.  (The application period has ended.)

You’ll be asked to provide some details about yourself, including a brief (250 words or less) pitch on how this training would benefit you; a criminal justice story idea you’d like to pursue using the training, and a short letter from your editor supporting your application. If you have any questions, you can reach the project coordinator, Joe Domanick, at 310-657-4984 or at  his email: jdomanick@jjay.cuny.edu. For more information about our Center, please visit http.//www.jjay.cuny.edu/cmcj.

* Illustration by DonkeyHotey via Flickr