“Jurisdictions provide structural and actual independence for public defense
programs that thrive and provide meaningful representation to clients according to national standards of practice. These Independent programs add value to communities at a high level. Tragically, in many jurisdictions, the public defense program is not independent, negatively impacting the individual meaningful representation of clients, the integrity of the legal system, and the community. Independence is essential. Independence produces a system of justice that enlarges us as a people who pride ourselves on fairness. The National Association for Public Defense (NAPD) issues an urgent call to advance the independence of all public defense systems.”