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Personal Narrative: Matthew

Matthew Holland is a 32 year old African-American male living in Spring Hill, FL. His license has been suspended for seven years due to unpaid criminal court debt that he owes dating back to convictions as an 18-year-old in 2006.

Personal Narrative: Marlo

Knapp's license has been suspended since March of 2010 due to unpaid fines and fees that she owes in Escambia County totaling near $7,000 stemming from a mix of both traffic and criminal cases.

Personal Narrative: Sean

Sean Lewis spent his 36th birthday at the Escambia County Clerk’s Office trying to resolve his overdue court fines and fees so that he could get his driver’s license back.

Personal Narrative: Melanie

Melanie is a white, 45-year-old resident of South Carolina. As a mother, she tries her best to care for her children but she has not been able to provide basic healthcare for them for years due to her license suspension.

Personal Narrative: Kevin

Kevin lives in a rural town in Alabama and is disabled. He relies on his monthly disability check to support him and his partner. He could not afford car insurance, but he continued to drive since there are no other viable options for transportation where he lives. After he was ticketed for lack of insurance, his license was suspended and his fine only compounded the thousands of dollars in court debt he already owed.

Stopping the Debt Spiral

This report shares the results of a survey of 304 low-income Illinois residents who were asked about their experience with debt, including criminal justice debt. Respondents disclosed the types of debt they had, the number of debts they owed, and the emotional toll debt takes on their families.
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