Massachusetts and the Carceral State Conference: September 11
On Sunday, September 11, 2016, join criminal justice activists from across Massachusetts for a day of skill and strategy building to invigorate the movement to replace state’s criminal justice system with community justice. Whether you’re already active or are looking to get involved, this day is for you! It’s free and open to all. There will be opportunities to learn about the great work that is being done for justice reform in Massachusetts and to improve your skills and understanding of the movement.
Sunday’s conference will run from 9 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. at Harvard Law School, Wasserstein Hall, 1585 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge MA. There will be workshops, panels, networking opportunities and activist art. Lunch is provided. Workshop presenters include the Louis D. Brown Peace Institute, Young Abolitionists, National Alliance on Mental Health -- and many more!
This event is being organized by the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice at Harvard Law School, the Coalition for Effective Public Safety, the Criminal Justice Policy Coalition and the National Lawyers Guild – Massachusetts Chapter. Harvard Law School is easily accessible by public transportation: the Harvard Square stop on the Red Line or the following bus lines: 1, 66, 68, 69, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 77, 78, 86, 96. Metered street parking is also available. For questions, please contact Rachel Corey, 617-807-0111, email@example.com
To ensure your spot in the workshops being offered, sign up here (read below for descriptions of workshops).
Schedule for the day:
9-9:45am: Welcome (Milstein B)
9:40am-9:55am: Poetry by Mass LEAP (Milstein B)
10am-10:50am: Workshop slot (Various rooms)
11am-11:50pm: Workshop slot (Various rooms)
12pm-12:50pm: Workshop slot (Various rooms)
1-2:30pm: Lunch and panel (Milstein B)
2:30-2:45pm: Poetry by Mass LEAP (Milstein B)
2:50pm-3:45pm: Affinity groups (Milstein A, B, C)
Workshop Schedule: Register here.
Lobbying 101: Interactive workshop explaining the MA legislative process, and presenting key ideas/talking points on criminal justice issues, and have workshop participants role play legislative meetings and report back on the effectiveness of their lobbying efforts. Presented by Sana Fadel, Deputy Director at Citizens for Juvenile Justice and Lizz Matos, staff attorney at Prisoners Legal Services. Room 2012.
Twitter 101: Learn how to use Twitter for social activism. For beginners. Presented by Jean Trounstine and Jasmine Gomez. Room 2004.
Diversity, Inclusion & Mental Health: An interactive workshop that provides an introduction to the major principles of diversity & inclusion that will raise sensitivity and awareness of participants while allowing opportunity to discuss the role implicit bias, discrimination, mental health stigma and race plays on diverse groups and community engagement followed by a 15 minute Q&A session. Presented by Dr. Matthieu Bermingham, Diversity Committee Chair & Florette Willis, Diversity Director of Outreach & Inclusion from NAMI Massachusetts State Office. Room Milstein A.
Legal Observer Training: Training activists to become Legal Observers (TM) to help preserve the rights of activists and other demonstrators engaging in political demonstrations and protests for progressive causes. Legal Observers are part of a legal defense team provided pro bono by the National Lawyers Guild to support activists engaged in the struggle for social and economic justice. Presented by lawyers Jeff Feuer and kt crossman for the National Lawyers Guild. Room 2012.
Art and Activism: a Roundtable: This 50-minute roundtable discussion will address questions related to the intersection of activism and the arts. Panelists include practicing artists currently based in the Boston area who explore issues of social justice through their artwork. These artists will discuss their personal artistic practices and reflect on what it means to challenge injustice and envision a better future through the media of poetry, performance, installation, and dance. Moderator: Amelia Spinney, Teaching Artist, VSA Massachusetts. Participants (so far): Ari Belather, Fellow in Poetry, The Writers’ Room of Boston and Soledad Boyd, Social Practice and Placemaking Lead, Design Studio for Social Intervention. Room 2009.
How To Use The Media and Make Sure You Don't Get Used: A presentation of the Massachusetts and national media landscape. You'll learn how to work the system to get in the most outlets possible, how to form relationships, and which outlets are related to which. Presented by Chris Faraone of DigBoston and a co-founder of the Boston Institute for Nonprofit Journalism and Howard Manly of the Bay State Banner. Room 2004.
Healing, Reconciliation, and Accountability Outside the Criminal Justice System: The Intergenerational Justice Program (IJP) supports families of murder victims and families of people incarcerated for murder as they navigate the criminal justice system from arrest through re-entry. IJP fills a major gap in the field with our explicit focus on family engagement and community involvement to address the impact of homicide on both sides. Re-entry programs tend to have a narrow focus on the individual (often younger, often for non-violent offenses) while IJP expands the resources available to people who have been convicted of violent crimes and their families. The focus of IJP is to ensure that all families have what they need to live in peace after a homicide. This workshop will describe our model for healing, reconciliation, and accountability and how we provide practical support for families on both sides. Facilitators will discuss the dangers of dividing communities into "victim" and "offender" and other institutional barriers the criminal justice system has imposed on families seeking justice and healing. Facilitators will also address the impact of racism and poverty on our communities that results in disparate numbers of poor people of color becoming both offenders and victims, often part of the same families and from the same neighborhoods. Families and communities of color need more support, resources, and community-led processes rather than the typical systemic response to violence: more police, swifter prosecution, and longer prison sentences. Facilitators will be from the partners of IJP: The Louis D. Brown Peace Institute, SPAN Inc, and VISIONS Inc. Milstein A. This workshop runs for 2 hours, so it will start in the 11am timeslot, and go through the 12 o'clock time slot until 12:50pm.
Independent Journalism and Public Records Requests: Jamie Folk and Johnathan Cohn discuss their investigations of the Boston 2024 organization and the Annie Dookhan case and how they went about them. Learn how to make your own media and public records requests. Room 2012.
Abolition now!: An introduction to the concept of prison abolition, including a history of police from slavery to mass incarceration. Presented by Young Abolitionists. Room 2009.
Healing, Reconciliation, and Accountability Outside the Criminal Justice System cont.
To ensure you have a spot in each of the workshops you want to attend, sign up here.