SAT NOTES: Incarceration and Deportation
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Note Taker(s):Anthony James Williams
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Email of Note taker(s):antwilliams@g.ucla.edu
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Date:Sat, May 4
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I. TopicsII. Summary CommentsIII. Action Item
IV. Date of First Contact/Follow Up
V. Contact Lead Name(s)VI. Contact Lead Email
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What you don't knowAdvocacy and rights of folks around ICE, detention centers, and deportation hearingsBeing a resource to the folks incarcerated: GED, money, networks, university grants etc.Rod Martinez & Anthony James Williams
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Lack experiential knowledgePolicy education in 1-on-1 basis: helping folks understand policy (how changes to immigration policy are impacting people, for example). One way to do that is to talk to healthcare providers in order to have the answers for folks impacted.Tiffany Joseph
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Academic discourse of crimmigration in relation to [national] activist spaces and grassroots communityConsidering positionality (whiteness in particular), how one can be useful to movements, and to which movements one can help.Pam Oliver
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How non-Black and non-Latinx communities are affected by incarceration and deportationTranslate for court events [because you can speak multiple languages]Tiffany Joseph
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Trends: increasing numbers of detainees, etc.Volunteer for citizenship clinics and using privilege as a "legal" citizen to help folks who are notTiffany Joseph
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What you know State-level immigration policyTo start policy education with folks: follow policy shifts as the start, do research on them, and then connect to different organizations by allowing yourself to get immersed in the world they inhabit. Learn who is the first to call in your area (Georgia) too so that you're not recreating the wheel. Specifically: lookup Freedom University and the Latino Studies Journal article about themFernando Clark; Tips from Tiffany Joseph and Kevin Escudero
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Southeast Asian deportation and detention fightsFight the narrative of the "perfect victim" or this idea of deserving. Ex: Moving away from of "I'm a DREAMER who has a 4.0."N/A
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Prison rape elimination act (PREA)Use institutional resources. Teach, bring folks to campus [pay them], and connect students to folks in the community (when we cannot be in the community ourselves). Don't assume people know everything, so bring folks to campus/these spaces to give basic breakdownsKevin Escudero
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Teaching in prisons"Immigrant's Day" in MA: do these exist otherwhere? Working with community groups, residents, and others to speak to lawmakers and advocate for immigrants. What helps is framing these things as 'we're all in this together', and we're all affected by this. Tiffany Joseph
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Family/loved one locked upUse models from other states, which Rhode Island did using Massachusetts when advocating.N/A
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There's a relationship between schools and prisonsSocial media solidarity around social movements for consciousness raisingAnthony James Williams
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Solitary confinement data from an academic lensConnect Brown's Prison Ed Program and UCLA Prison Ed Program regarding course credit in regards to starting at Brown inside and finishing at Brown outside.Anthony James Williams / Kevin to connect Ant to Prison Ed folks
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Statistics about racial patterns of incarcerationRethink solidarity and the work we do: translate it outside of the academy, bring a program into the academy as advocates, etc. Including inside/outside partnerships, even if they're not inside carceral spaces that can be related to work inside. Jennifer Jones & Kai Parker
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Experience in community groupsSimplify solidarity. It can be as small as 4-5 people getting together and speaking. "The simplest things can make change happen." Even thinking about the language, words, how we show up in spaces, and how we even approach coalition building.N/A
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Challenges of solidarity, coalition building, and emotive aspectsGenerally: we often leave the affected folks' desires outside of what we actually do, especially as researchers/academicsNational LGBTQ Criminal Working Group. Each subgroup has calls. There are funds avail for people to come to quarterly meetings!mike@blackandpink.org, david@blackandpink.orgDavid & Mike
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Teaching inside: Importance of emphasizing personal connections and not focusing entirely on the material because there are lots of changes and any class could be their last class
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Teaching inside: allow students to use the classroom space to build community, ex: newly incarcerated folks learning from folks incarcerated for longer
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The feeling of having an ethical obligation as a researcher to dedicate yourself to a lifetime of advocacy, but how can one person do that and take on that burden? What does it look like to create pipelines of advocacy that go beyond us? Consistent people become your go-to person
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Solution: give promises that have periods at the end. What is a promise you can give today? Plant the seed and walk away. You're going to let them down because you can't fix everything; solidarity is about consistency and truth. Ex: list of resources (jobs, health, etc) or healing spaces once a month for three hours
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Whatever helps somebody get out of prison is great. Whether that's basketball, education, church, whatever. This is really important to keep in mind when we feel bad for not ruffling the feathers because it is important to be able to still go into these institutions.
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Mixed emotions: What do we do beyond just acknowledging the fears/trauma of those affected? How do we think about orgs that just offer translation services but offer so little? Both exist at same time
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What are other forms of solidarity and coalition building, structurally, that are not just classes (which are only avail to some folks and are temporary)
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We're uplifted in spaces by great relationships. Solidarity means looking at this as not a monolith, but how you enter the work and how that affects these huge systems. Abolitionists alone aren't going to do it. Ex: sometimes you just tie the strings together by connecting people on the ground with academics, for example. Sometimes you become the thing that makes people shit.
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Amplifying the Sanctuary for All movement brings together Black and Latinx communites in the U.S. South as a way of articulating a reclaiming of space. Public spaces are not supposed to be spaces of surviellance, but spaces where we can do our life.
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Sometimes a lack of solidarity around shared historical context who are deeply impacted. What does solidarity look like across race/ethnicity when dealing with anti-Blackness, for example?
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How do we deal with how we think of folks who stole something as getting out, but seeingt the person who has charges involving sexual violence against a minor as someone who deserves to be in prison forever?
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Emotion as a tool in a space where emotion can be dangerous; when we ask communities to feel and that feeling might be anger, what do we do?I don't emote with people inside; I don't express solidarity in that way, I offer a tissue. [response: my emotional response needs to be very strong for them]
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What happens when we open that up in the space and they have to go back where we get to go home? [response: And you can vocalize "I know what you have to go back to, so let's prepare you for that." If you help people unpack it, it's your job to pack it back in]
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incarcerated for around 10 years. My father being incarcerated informs how I talk to people now. I won't say "I know what it's like to be here" because I was somewhere else. Instead I affirm the emotion generally: loneliness, anger, all of that. Lets them know that they are not wrong.
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Summary Comments from the session: These specific action items are about solidarity for folks impacted by immigration, detention, deportation, and incarceration.
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