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Wednesday, September 26, 2018

6:30 PM - 9:00 PM

Spelman College/The Camille Olivia Hanks Cosby, Ed.D. Academic Center Auditorium
350 Spelman Lane
Atlanta , Georgia 30314
United States

The Baton Foundation, in partnership with Spelman College, Public Square, Mass Story Lab, Gideon’s Promise, Common Good Atlanta and Women on the Rise, will host a two-day event focused on the impact of incarceration in the Black community, the state of Georgia, and the United States. This program is free and open to the public.

Program Narrative

With 2.2 million people behind bars on any given day, the United States incarcerates more people than any other country in the world. Currently, the state of Georgia ranks number 1 in the country for the number of persons under supervision by the criminal justice system (i.e. prison, jail, parole or probation). Most of the individuals incarcerated are poor and/or people of color. Of those, 54% of men in jail/prison are head of household, and 52% of incarcerated women are head of household. The impact on children is devastating. 1 in 28 American children have a parent in prison or jail (2.7 million children). Not surprisingly, the communities from which these individuals come suffer tremendously. Mahatma Ghandi once said, “The true measure of any society can be found in how it treats its most vulnerable members.” As communities, interested groups and individuals continue to challenge the legal, economic and social norms that create these statistics, Unshackled Narratives: The Impact of Incarceration will provide important perspectives from those directly affected, and offer policy strategies for a way forward.

Program Overview

Unshackled Narratives: The Impact of Incarceration will use the City of Atlanta and its communities as the lens through which we explore, discuss, and bring into focus issues related to incarceration in Atlanta and in the country. This two-part event kicks off with an evening screening on Wednesday, September 26th at 6:30 PM of RIKERS: An American Jail and post-screening panel discussion with Cadeem Gibbs, who is featured in the RIKERS film, as well as Serena Nunn, former Atlanta Fulton County Public Defender Office and Atteeyah Hollie, Senior Staff Attorney, Southern Center for Human Rights. Ilham Askia, Executive Director, Gideon’s Promise, will moderate the panel. On Saturday, September 29th Mass Story Lab will lead the second part of Unshackled Narratives, designed to bring community stakeholders together to develop strategies for criminal justice reform in Atlanta. This morning activity from 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM will feature personal stories presented by formerly incarcerated men and women who live in the Atlanta area. They will describe the direct impact mass incarceration has had on them, their families and their communities. Their powerful testimony will lead into break-out sessions facilitated by Mass Story Lab, and a community dialogue focusing on the issues related to closing Atlanta Jail.

Unshackled Narratives: The Impact of Incarceration is presented by Spelman College in conjunction with Public Square – a producer of RIKERS: An American Jail and its partner Mass Story Lab – in collaboration with Atlanta partners: Gideon’s Promise, Common Good Atlanta, Women on the Rise and The Baton Foundation.

About Spelman College

Founded in 1881, Spelman College is a leading liberal arts college widely recognized as the global leader in the education of women of African descent. Located in Atlanta, the College’s picturesque campus is home to 2,100 students. Spelman is the country’s leading producer of Black women who complete Ph.D.s in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). The College’s status is confirmed by U.S. News and World Report, which ranked Spelman No. 61 among all liberal arts colleges and No. 1 among historically Black colleges and universities. The Wall Street Journal ranked the College No. 3, nationally, in terms of student satisfaction. Outstanding alumnae include Children’s Defense Fund Founder Marian Wright Edelman, Starbucks Group President and COO Rosalind Brewer, former Acting Surgeon General and Spelman’s first alumna President Audrey Forbes Manley, global bioinformatics geneticist Janina Jeff and author Pearl Cleage. For more information, visit www.spelman.edu.

About Public Square

Public Square is a non-profit media company working for a better future through journalism and collaboration. It combines award-winning video production, communications and engagement expertise in one shop to raise public awareness about issues that are critical to a strong democracy. Its work shifts the narrative by featuring fresh voices to advance social justice. Over the past two years, Public Square has collaborated with local partners to produce hundreds of screenings of RIKERS: An American Jail across the country to promote public understanding of mass incarceration. To strengthen opportunities to raise up local narratives, Public Square partners with Create Forward to bring Mass Story Lab to communities. RIKERS: An American Jail from Bill Moyers, is a production of Schumann Media Center, Inc. and Brick City TV LLC in association with Public Square Media, Inc.  Learn more: www.publicsquaremedia.org

About Mass Story Lab

Mass Story Lab is a participatory storytelling project designed by storyteller, educator, and cultural organizer, Piper Anderson. Mass Story Lab aims to make stories an instrument of justice. In a Mass Story Lab the stories of people directly impacted by mass incarceration become the transformative lens through which communities imagine a world beyond prisons. Visit us at: www.massstorylab.com

About Gideon’s Promise

The Gideon’s Promise mission is to transform the criminal justice system by building a movement of public defenders who provide equal justice for marginalized communities. Learn more at: www.gideonspromise.org

About Common Good Atlanta

Common Good Atlanta is a nonprofit consortium of over fifty university faculty teaching in prisons throughout Georgia who believe that broad, democratic access to higher education strengthens the common good of communities. For more information, visit: www.commongoodatlanta.com

About Women on the Rise

Women on the Rise is an advocacy policy organization led by women targeted and/or impacted by the criminal “justice” system founded and directed by Marilynn Winn. Women on the Rise works to educate, heal, and empower ourselves, one another, and our communities to demand justice, dignity, and liberation for all. Women on the Rise envisions a world where women, families and communities are safe, whole and free. To bring that vision into existence, we transform lives, laws and social institutions. The leadership body of Women on the Rise is Harriet’s Daughters. Visit us at: www.rjactioncenter.org/wor

About The Baton Foundation

The Baton Foundation is a community-focused organization that uses non-formal and informal learning modalities to strengthen Black boys and adolescents emotionally, culturally, and intellectually. The organization also hosts Black history and culture-focused events for the boys’ families, their communities, and for residents of and visitors to the City of Atlanta.


Registration is closed for this event.

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