For years, the Charleston County Sheriff’s Office has had an agreement to report and transfer undocumented immigrants to federal agents | File photo by Rūta Smith

[image-1] A consortium of local law enforcement agencies is looking for seven community representatives to help address and improve systemic criminal justice issues in Charleston County.

The county’s Criminal Justice Coordinating Council (CJCC) has seven openings for the 2019-2021 term.

The group is looking for one member from each of the following local communities: faith, nonprofit, healthcare, business, defense attorneys, crime survivors, and the previously incarcerated.

Community representatives are expected to attend monthly meetings to voice the concerns of their respective communities and review CJCC policies. Of the twelve community representatives, one is elected to have full voting rights within the Council.
[content-1] “Community input and guidance has been instrumental since the very beginning,” said Charleston County Councilman Vic Rawl in a statement. “Every voice adds value in making sure our justice system is fair, effective, just and equitable.”

The CJCC, formed in 2015, is focused on data-driven solutions based on information gathered from police departments in Charleston, North Charleston, and Mt. Pleasant, as well as the county Sheriff’s Office and the Ninth Circuit Solicitor’s Office.

Other members include the state chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union and Charleston County Council.

In its 2018 midyear report, released in September, the Council found significant racial and ethnic disproportionality within the county’s criminal justice system. Among the most startling finds: African-Americans in the area were jailed 7.65 times as often as their white counterparts in 2017.

The case with the most racial disproportionality was unlawful carrying of a firearm. Last year, slightly more than 13.5 black people were booked at the Sheriff Al Cannon Detention Center for every one white person brought up on the charge.

You can find the application to join the CJCC below. The Council is accepting applications through Dec. 7, 2018, and they can be emailed to or mailed to 3831 Leeds Ave., North Charleston, SC 29405.