In 2021 we are working on a number of major initiatives. Read more to find out what they are.
A powerful discussion moderated by one of our VAAC co-coordinators, Darryl woods, with 5-min video about the profound growth and transformation that can happen in prison, featuring 3 powerful stories
Use Your Voice tells the story of four individuals whose right to vote was previously denied.
Step Inside the Circle is a 6 minute video that shows the power of compassion in understanding and releasing shame in ALL communities, but especially one centered around punishment.
Suppressed: The Fight To Vote is a powerful 37 mins documentary on how voter suppression happens at each stage of the game.
This short, fun, and funny video busts some common myths about voting by mail.
It is the mission of the Voting Access for All Coalition to ensure that all persons in pretrial situations, individuals about to be released from prison, and those formerly incarcerated, along with their families and community members, have the opportunity and knowledge they need to exercise their right to vote …
Thousands of people awaiting trial in Michigan’s jails have the right to vote, but for a long list of reasons never get their hands on ballots. A coalition of activist groups is making a concerted effort to remedy that. https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/2020/10/08/how-to-vote-from-jail/3571788001/
This is an excellent Detroit Free Press article about voting rights for the formerly incarcerated and those awaiting trial. We urge everyone to register immediately and to apply for your absentee ballots immediately. Vote early if you can! Visit our Make Voting Easy page for easy information. https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/2020/08/02/michigan-election-2020-prison/5530003002/
National Lifers of America believes that inmates are the best people to advocate for other prisoners. Covid-19 is making that harder than ever. A look at a powerful movement from some of the most sealed-off people in the penal system. https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/06/25/criminal-justice-prison-conditions-national-lifers-association-334021
The Michigan Department of Corrections began a pilot program at four prisons which allows employment counselors to help obtain the documents, paperwork and photos required for an ID for people scheduled for parole to “remove a major barrier for people who have been incarcerated as they re-enter society.” https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/2020/06/24/michigan-prison-release-id-program/3250108001/
A white paper written by American Friends Service Committee – Michigan Criminal Justice Program and Carceral State Project at the University of Michigan presents an evidence-based case for decarceration as the only humane and meaningful response to the COVID-19 pandemic in prison. It includes an overview of the relationship between prisons …