Segments in this Video

Budget Cuts In an Overburdened Justice System (05:28)


In a system of overflowing prisons, record arrests, increased caseloads, and increased civil cases, legislators continue to cut criminal and civil court budgets. Bill Moyers introduces his panel of judges.

Underrepresented Defendants (04:20)

A crisis arises in a district criminal court where each state-appointed attorney handles up to 700 cases per year. A judge declares that insufficient funding for the justice system is unconstitutional.

Politicians Underfund Public Defenders (02:10)

This segment examines the overburdened public defender's office in Orleans Parish. State legislators reluctant to fund defense for what public perceives to be guilty criminals.

District Attorneys vs. Public Defenders (04:08)

Due process of law comes into question. Offices of the District Attorney have more resources available to prosecute, raising the argument for an even playing field in the justice system.

Inequities in the Justice System (03:36)

Representatives from the public defenders’ office and the District Attorney justify what they do and why they do it. The DA demonstrates little sympathy for the under-representation of the accused.

Justice and Social Problems (05:10)

A panel of judges, Kenneth Starr, and Bill Moyers discuss poverty and social problems relative to the equity of the justice system and the causes of crime.

Politics of Justice (04:27)

Politicians and the public often look to the courts to stop crime, yet judges agree that this is a false expectation. Ken Starr asserts that the system of justice is breaking down in some states due to lack of resources.

Reinventing Justice: Justice Reform (05:38)

A panelist judge recommends a comprehensive justice center that includes not only officers of the court, but mental health and social services housed in one place. Panelists discuss violent crime, illegal drugs, and drug users.

Crisis in the Courts (04:06)

There is a crisis in civil and criminal court systems, and a private legal system for the rich. A case study reveals the frustrations of the poor as they try to work through the justice system.

Federal Budget Cuts for Legal Services (03:23)

Currently, only 20% of the legal needs of the poor are being met in the U.S. Boston Legal Services offers legal assistance for people who cannot afford their own attorney. Historically, Reagan wanted to abolish all legal services for the poor.

Judges and Access to Justice System (05:53)

Access to justice must be available to people who cannot afford an attorney, and judges must have the tools they need. Judges on the panel propose partial solutions to the problems of legal services for the poor in an overcrowded system.

Politics and the Justice System (04:17)

Constitutional safeguards are at risk in an environment of poor political leadership. Solutions to the problems of the court system must be approached in a multi-faceted ways, and people must be mobilized and educated.

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And Justice for All?

Part of the Series : Listening to America with Bill Moyers
DVD Price: $99.95
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This program with Bill Moyers examines the crisis within the American court system. In many parts of the country, funding for already burdened and backlogged courts is being reduced. And public defenders and legal aid attorneys are in short supply, leaving the poor without adequate or timely representation. Yet, few politicians have stepped forward with solutions. In this program, a panel of judges discuss a variety of potential remedies for this national crisis. (60 minutes)

Length: 57 minutes

Item#: BVL5033

ISBN: 978-1-4213-9269-1

Copyright date: ©1992

Closed Captioned

Performance Rights

Prices include public performance rights.

Not available to Home Video customers.

Only available in USA and Canada.