Across the country, politicians, reform advocates and the bail industry are waiting to see what happens next.
We're asking distinguished reporters to highlight an issue or story that is either being missed entirely or underreported by the media.
It's a disturbing trend: Across Texas, the number of women awaiting trial in county jails has jumped by 48 percent since 2011. At the peak this year in August, more than 6,300 women were jailed before trial, up from under 4,000 in 2011.
As women go to jail at staggering rates, Dallas Morning News reporter Cary Aspinwall tapped into her outrage to tell the story of how their children get overlooked.
In Oklahoma, ranked No. 1 for per capita female incarceration, kids were going missing from school because their mothers were locked up in county jail. "This was the most complicated story I’ve ever done," writes 2016 National Fellow Cary Aspinwall.
No one in the criminal justice system is responsible for the safety of children whose mothers go to jail, an investigation by The Dallas Morning News has found. The finding that holds true in most communities across the country.
Oklahoma's Tulsa County has essentially recreated a system of debtors’ prisons, critics say. Less noted, however, is what happens to the children when parents are locked up in county jail, whether for a few days or several months.