As you’ve seen in the preceding sections, many innovations in the courts occur at the local trial court and appellate court levels. However, there are also a host of initiatives that extend statewide with the shared goal of improving the overall delivery of justice in California. This section profiles a small portion of that work.
In the first section, One Branch, we highlight strides toward addressing some of the most basic needs of the courts—case management, judicial and staff education, efforts to address disparities in practice among counties in the state (in this case, court-appointed counsel in dependency cases), and courthouse facilities.
The next section, Connecting the Court to the Community, spotlights programs that strive to improve transparency, access, and outreach to the public we serve. Here we highlight programs the judicial branch has initiated to support education efforts for civics teachers, to foster collaboration with colleagues and counterparts in California’s large and diverse tribal communities, to provide outreach through law and public library partnerships, and to offer youth opportunities to participate in youth courts and experience justice firsthand.
In the final section, Closing the Loop, we highlight branchwide initiatives that are working to move people out of the justice system, whether they be self-represented litigants in civil cases, children in foster care, or people on probation or parole in emerging community corrections initiatives.
These efforts are possible with a unified court system and centralized administrative efforts, guided by the direction of the Judicial Council for the benefit of the courts and the public they serve. This collection represents just a small percentage of the work occurring each and every day to improve the administration of the California courts.