Clerk Martinez’s Transparency Flip Flop

Iris MartinezCook County Clerk of the Circuit Court Iris Martinez pulled what was always expected and flip flopped here campaign pledge to make her office be responsive to the Illinois Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Instead Martinez backed an Illinois Senate bill to make the office responsive to what is called the local records act.

The Clerk’s office was created under the Illinois Court’s Act and thus it is deemed to be exempt from FOIA. The hitch is that under the Illinois Court’s Act court records are deemed open as the court hearings unless sealed by a judge. The Clerk’s office maintains the court’s records and data so it makes sense that the records, whether in paper or digital form, would be open for public inspection. The Clerk’s office has the infrastructure to make the Court’s paper records available for inspection but obtaining digital versions of those same records is nearly impossible.

If you want to read more about Martinez’s flip flop you should check out a good article from Josh McGhee from Injustice Watch (link below).

Also on the show today we cover:

  • The CPD not making real progress on transitioning from away from their old was of capturing and retaining gang affiliation data.
  • The CPD preparing for demonstrations after release of Toledo shooting video, Chauvin verdict. This was covered in a Sun-Times article – most likely planted to some degree from the CPD.
  • Hispanic Caucus endorsing the compromised version of the community council that Mayor Lightfoot dismissed.
  • CPD still behind on progress mandated by the federal court monitored consent decree.
  • CWB’s really bad analysis of violence on the Redline in Q1 2021.
  • CPD movies to fire officers for shooting on the platform at Grand Ave. stop on the Redline.

Images for today’s show

Links for today’s how:

Ridership is low, but violent crime is through the roof on Red Line, data shows

Tracy has nearly two decades of experience researching and working within criminal justice systems. When Tracy began pursuing a career dedicate to system reform, he found that no single organization existed to promote evidence-based discussions among law enforcement agencies and the communities they serve. Recognizing that citizens in Chicago deserved the right to demand transparency in their criminal justice system, Siska established the Chicago Justice Project. He received his Master of Arts degree in Criminal Justice at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

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This is our Chicago Justice Podcast that covers crime, violence, and justice issues in Chicago. We will feature deep dives in to justice system data, interview with researchers and justice system reform advocates, as well as evaluations of justice system practices.

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