DECEMBER 12, 2018
NCSC’s 2018 State of the State Courts survey
Despite a year that saw attacks on judges specifically and on the judicial system generally, public confidence in state courts increased this year, according to NCSC’s 2018 State of the State Courts survey.
A whopping 76 percent of the survey respondents expressed support in their state courts in 2018 – up from 71 percent in 2017. That increased support resulted in higher marks from the public on a wide variety of attributes, including a 12-percent increase in those saying that courts are a good investment of taxpayer dollars, and a 7-percent increase in those who think of courts as places where people work hard.
Since 2014, NCSC has produced the State of the State Courts public opinion survey, with GBA Strategies conducting 1,000 telephone interviews with registered voters nationwide. This year’s survey, which was conducted between Nov. 13 and 17, was developed by the pollster and by an advisory group consisting of national court leaders. The error rate is +/- 3.1, with a 95-percent confidence level.
Here are a few other key findings:
“While overall views of state court systems have held strong in this environment [of attacks],” said NCSC’s pollster, GBA Strategies, “this narrative has done little to alleviate well-established concerns of bias, inefficiency, and a two-tiered justice system weighted against ‘regular’ people.”
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eCourts rolls into Las Vegas
eCourts 2018 is under way in Las Vegas. As the 1,046 attendees walked onto the conference floor, they were welcomed by Cora, the conference robot. Cora, provided by Advanced Robot Solutions, allows guests to view the conference schedule, read court-related publications, watch videos – and our personal favorite – perform a robot dance. Attendees are gaining an education in artificial intelligence, evidence-based practice, blockchain, online dispute resolution, and more. Tuesday's featured speaker, Ben Barton, professor at the University of Tennessee College of Law, discussed his book, Rebooting Justice. The book argues that our laws are too complex and legal advice is too expensive. Both are obstacles for the poor and even middle-class Americans to get help and protect their rights. If you missed the conference, you can view videos of the sessions at www.e-courts.org.