Missouri Bar notes ‘Juror Appreciation Week’

Missouri’s courts will observe “Juror Appreciation Week” Monday through Friday, the Missouri Bar announced last week.

During the week, judges, lawyers and court clerks let jurors know the importance of their contributions to the courts and to their communities.

Last year, statewide court records show, more than 88,000 Missourians reported for jury duty in the state courts.

That number doesn’t include those Missourians called to serve on juries in the federal courts system.

The Bar said more than 50 courthouses throughout the state, including Cole County, will observe the week — each in their own way, because there’s no specific program designed for all to follow.

Many will display a Missouri Bar poster that thanks jurors for doing their part.

Judges also may take additional time to thank jurors and to acknowledge the significance of their service.

Missouri Bar President Patrick B. Starke said in a news release that the right to trial by a jury is one of the fundamental guarantees included in the U.S. Constitution’s Bill of Rights.

Starke quoted Thomas Jefferson: “I consider trial by jury as the only anchor yet imagined by man by which a government can be held to the principles of its constitution.”

Then, Starke added: “We understand that to serve (on a jury) means rearranging schedules, canceling appointments, and often times, missing work.

“This week is dedicated to recognizing those sacrifices and thanking Missourians who report for jury duty because they are doing their part to protect this core right — which is as fundamental to our country’s democracy as the right to vote.”

More information about Juror Appreciation Week can be found on The Missouri Bar’s website, at www.mobar.org/jurorappreciationweek.

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