Chief Justice Lorie Gildea Proclaims Juror Appreciation Week April 30-May 4
Thursday, April 26, 2012
Minnesota Supreme Court Chief Justice Lorie S. Gildea has proclaimed April 30 to May 4 Juror Appreciation Week. The Judicial Branch will use this occasion to express appreciation for those Minnesotans who have answered the call to jury service.
The right to a trial by jury is one of the core protections of individual freedom in American society. The Constitutions of the United States and the State of Minnesota guarantee defendants in criminal cases and litigants in civil cases the right to a trial by jury.
“Jurors are an important component of our justice system, where citizens can participate in court decisions that impact the lives of individuals, families, and businesses,” said Chief Justice Gildea, noting that Minnesotans respond to jury summons at a consistently high rate. “This week, courts around the state will take time to recognize and thank the citizens who report for jury service, and to recognize employers who support employee leave for jury service.”
During the week, various activities will be going on in the district courts to recognize prospective jurors, including:
- The First Judicial District staff will hand out American flags and thank you notes.
- The Second Judicial District will post the Proclamation and have Chief Judge Kathleen Gearin read the Chief Justice’s Proclamation for Jury Appreciation Week to all reporting jurors.
- Fourth Judicial District Administrator Mark Thompson will greet jurors, thank them for their service, and read the Proclamation. Jury staff will decorate the jury assembly room with jury appreciation banners and will be wearing “Jurors Make It Work” buttons.
- The Third, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, and Ninth judicial districts will post the Proclamation in the courthouses.
- The Tenth Judicial District will post the Proclamation and read it to prospective jurors.
Each year, the Minnesota Judicial Branch obtains names from driver’s license, state ID card, and voter registration lists and compiles that information into a composite source list. From that list, individuals are randomly selected by computer and mailed a summons to appear for jury duty.
A prospective juror must be a United States citizen, a resident of the county in which they are summoned, at least 18 years old, able to communicate in English, physically and mentally capable of serving, a person who has had their civil rights restored if they have been convicted of a felony, and a person who has not served as a state or federal juror in the past four years.
Persons summoned for jury duty can complete the required qualification questionnaire through the Judicial Branch Website (www.mncourts.gov). More details about jury service, including frequently asked questions and an orientation video, “All Rise: Jury Service in Minnesota,” can be found at http://www.mncourts.gov/jury.