Richmond Justice - April 26, 2016 - http://www.richmondjustice.org/iman
When I began my work on criminal justice—or, criminal injustice, as I call it—I visited communities in Richmond to learn what individuals there saw as their deepest problems. The conversations I had with folks always intersected with incarceration. Every person I met was either a felon or they have a family member or a loved one who was a felon. In some way, a criminal record affected how every family functioned. I heard: “I can’t vote,” “I can’t find a job,” or, “I can’t find better housing.” All those things had been denied because of felony records. Entire communities were struggling because of felony records.
We need to turn the moment into a movement. We need to answer the question, “If my right to vote means something, then how do I use it to change my community?” We have to make action plans that move us forward.