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Prisons Archives - Institute of the Black World 21st Century

Ending Mass Incarceration: Ideas from Today's Leaders

Ending Mass Incarceration: Ideas from Today’s Leaders

By | Editors' Choice

By Inimai M. Chettiar, Priya Raghavan, Michael Waldman, Adureh Onyekwere — The American public has decisively concluded that our approach to criminal justice isn’t working. Mass incarceration is the civil rights crisis of our time. The racial disparities pervasive in our justice system compound at every juncture: African Americans are more likely to be stopped by police, arrested, detained before trial, and given harsher sentences than whites. Worse, the disparities in…

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Ruth Wilson Gilmore

Is Prison Necessary? Ruth Wilson Gilmore Might Change Your Mind

By | Editors' Choice

In three decades of advocating for prison abolition, the activist and scholar has helped transform how people think about criminal justice. By Rachel Kushner, New York Times — There’s an anecdote that Ruth Wilson Gilmore likes to share about being at an environmental-justice conference in Fresno in 2003. People from all over California’s Central Valley had gathered to talk about the serious environmental hazards their communities faced, mostly as a…

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The text was approved by 535 MEPs in a vote at the European parliament on Tuesday.

MEPs pass ‘watershed’ resolution calling for action against racism

By | News & Current Affairs

Text calls on member states to tackle discrimination against people of African descent. By Jennifer Rankin, The Guardian — The European parliament has called for action to tackle the “structural racism” facing millions of Europeans of African descent in an unprecedented resolution that was overwhelmingly approved by MEPs. The resolution calls on European Union member states to develop national anti-racism strategies to deal with discrimination in education, health, housing, policing, the justice…

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Albert Woodfox was released from prison in 2016 after more than four decades.

After 40 years in solitary, activist Albert Woodfox tells his story of survival

By | Editors' Choice

The former Black Panther and member of the Angola 3 reflects on how he turned his cell from a place of confinement to a space for personal growth. By Albert Woodfox, The Guardian — My wrists were handcuffed to my waist by a leather strap. These restraints would become standard for me for decades to come. They walked me to a car and I got in. A captain next to…

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Nov 19th Edition of Vantage Point Radio: Can the Working Families Party Be the Third Force in American Politics?

By | Vantage Point Radio, Video/Audio | No Comments

Topics: Protecting the Financial Health of New York Consumers • “The Adultrification of Black Youth in the Criminal Justice System” • Can the Working Families Party Become the Third Force in American Politics. Guests: Lorelei Salas (New York Commissioner of Consumer Affairs, New York, NY) and Jeree Thomas (Policy Director, The Campaign for Youth Justice, Washington, D.C.)

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From Black Women’s Blueprint on Twitter.

Hundreds Gather for the March for Black Women in D.C.

By | News & Current Affairs

“We Are Marching To Say That Black Women’s Lives Matter…” By Taryn Finley, Huff Post — Black activist groups marched on the National Mall and Justice Department in Washington, D.C. on Saturday to raise awareness about the injustices black women face. Black Women’s Blueprint, BYP100 and Trans Sistas of Color Project and other groups have united for the March for Black Women. The event’s co-chairs are activists Farah Tanis, Bré…

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The Slaves Rebel - image by Mr. Fish, Truthdig

The Slaves Rebel

By | Commentaries/Opinions

By Chris Hedges, Truthdig — The only way to end slavery is to stop being a slave. Hundreds of men and women in prisons in some 17 states are refusing to carry out prison labor, conducting hunger strikes or boycotting for-profit commissaries in an effort to abolish the last redoubt of legalized slavery in America. The strikers are demanding to be paid the minimum wage, the right to vote, decent…

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Inmates in prison

Prisons Are Already Retaliating Against Inmates Protesting ‘Modern Slavery’

By | News & Current Affairs

On Tuesday, inmates across the country launched a strike to protest labor conditions in prisons. Only three days into the strike, some inmates have experienced retaliation. By Tarpley Hitt, Daily Beast — Inmates are already experiencing retaliation for alleged participation in the nation-wide prison strike that launched August 21, representatives from the prison labor advocacy group Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee (IWOC) told The Daily Beast. The strike, organized by a…

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Debtor s’ Prison

How Prisons Serve Capitalism

By | Commentaries/Opinions

By Dan Berger, Public Books — I once asked a class at a prison in Washington State how they would describe the relationship between capitalism and incarceration. “They get you coming and going,” someone quickly offered. Perhaps he had in mind the legal financial obligations that are levied against many people upon their conviction.1 He also could have been referring to the exorbitant costs of commissary supplies. In January, Florida prisoners announced…

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Inmates at a county jail on July 26, 2013 in Williston, North Dakota. | Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images

‘Abolish Prisons’ Is the New ‘Abolish ICE’

By | Editors' Choice

A growing group of leftists wants to get rid of the entire prison industrial complex in America. By Ruairí Arrieta-Kenna, Politico  — It’s no secret that the criminal justice system in America needs fixing—everyone from Jared Kushner to Cory Booker agrees. And while the Koch brothers might not go so far as Elizabeth Warren to outright label it “racist … front to back,” politically speaking, this is one rare issue that seems…

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