Thursday, May 21 2015, 6:45pm
210 Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, Madison, Wisconsin 53703
Tonight, Thursday May 21st at 7:00 pm the Dane County Board will be vote on whether to pass Resolution 556 “Investigating Alternatives to Incarceration, Solutions to Racial Disparities and Mental Health Challenges in the Dane County Jail and Throughout Dane County's Criminal Justice System” .
Thank you!! for all you have done to show up to push for this to make it this far!! Come out for the vote today.
Young Gifted and Black calls for the passage of this resolution and would see it as a great step in the right direction for Dane County. YGB and other organizations such as MOSES, No New Jail, NAMI, hundreds of individuals, and a few County Board Supervisors have been working tirelessly for months to get to this point.
Today is a national day of action against state violence against Transgender and Cisgender Black Women and Girls. Too often their stories of police violence, over-incarceration, and criminalization are ignored due to the attention given to the horriffic violence against Black men. As a predominatly women and queer Black organization we see this resolution as a step towards the liberation of Black women and girls as well as Black people of all genders. (YGB will be holding more actions for Black women and queer people in June, so stay tuned!!)
YGB's first action on November 25th culminated with close to 200 people registering and/or speaking in opposition to the building a new jail at the Public Protection and Judiciary Committee. At that time there was still the possibility of building a $130-$160 million jail in a new location or vast renovations. Due to hours of public testimony, conversations with County Board members, public education meetings, and weekly direct actions YGB has been able to shift the conversation. This policy has the potential to move Dane County from the bottom of the nation in Black-White disparities in incarceration, by implementing visionary approaches to alternatives to incarceration.
The resolution moves YGB in the direction of our 4 demands related to the jail:
1) No New Jail: The resolution states that Dane County will not be building a new jail.
2) Free the 350: Workgroups will be charged with finding ways to divert people from incarceration and make their length of stay much shorter by programs such as community-based transformative justice programs, and lowering or ending bail.
3) End Solitary Confinement: One workgroup will make suggestions for how to get rid of solitary confinement in the jail.
4) Black Community Investment: All recommendations for programming or investments must keep Black leadership and interests central, including funding alternatives to incarceration and mental health services that are Black-led.
To make this happen we must see substantial changes from all aspects of the Prison Industrial Complex in Dane County. We know the fight isn't over and will continue to put pressure on the institutions involved including the District Attorney, MPD and Police Departments in Dane County, and the Sheriff's Office.
All Power to the People