San Gabriel Valley Tribune: Op-Ed: State’s Unhealthy Bail System Needs Reform

The young woman in my clinic, whom I’ll call Nicole, was eight months pregnant with her third child. It should have been a joyous time—but she was in a county jail. Nicole was awaiting trial on a misdemeanor charge, and while a judge had set bail, she couldn’t afford to pay it.

I’m a public health researcher and physician in the Los Angeles County jails, the largest jail system in the country. I met Nicole when she sought out a doctor to treat her acid reflux. Yet, mostly I just listened as she shared with me how much she missed her children.

Sadly, Nicole’s story is all too familiar.


Read full op-ed by Dr. Lello Tesema, internal medicine physician, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar at UCLA, and a member of the University of California Criminal Justice & Health Consortium via San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Kenny Foster