Join us for an extended conversation with Victoria Law, Jason Lydon (of Black and Pink: Supporting Our LGBTQ Family in Prison) and representatives from STEP about how the Prison Industrial Complex has grown and adapted to absorb new demographics. This continued conversation will cover the specific tactics employed by an expanding prison industry to accommodate women, LGBTQ and gender non-conforming populations. The evening's conversations will not be limited to how minority populations are victim to the P.I.C.
Black & Pink is an open family of LGBTQ prisoners and “free world” allies who support each other. Our work toward the abolition of the prison industrial complex is rooted in the experience of currently and formerly incarcerated people. We are outraged by the specific violence of the prison industrial complex against LGBTQ people, and respond through advocacy, education, direct service, and organizing. Our current projects include an on-line penpal program where LGBTQ people in prison can find outside penpals, a monthly newsletter, an art project, and direct advocacy and support for a few select individuals who are experiencing harassment, sexual violence, lack of access to health care, mistreatment, etc. (We are not able to do advocacy work for everyone at this time because of capacity, but we do the best we can.) http://www.blackandpink.org/
STEPS to End Family Violence provides an array of services targeted to meet the needs of victims of gender-based violence: counseling, crisis intervention, advocacy, and legal services for adults, teens, and children; group counseling services in both English and Spanish; creative arts and movement groups and multiple family groups; community outreach and training to both service providers and community members; and alternatives to incarceration and batterers intervention programming. http://www.egscf.org/services/steps/
Victoria Law is a freelance journalist and independent scholar who has spent more than a decade writing about and supporting the struggles of women in prison. She is the author of Resistance Behind Bars: The Struggles of Incarcerated Women, winner of the 2009 PASS Award and just published in a new, revised edition. She is co-editor of the new book Don’t Leave Your Friends Behind, an anthology about parenting and social justice activism. Both books are published by PM Press.