1 JoBS NoT JAILS! june 9: rally & hearing communications toolkit
2 Communications toolkit TABLE OF Contents 1. Flyer for hearing & rally 2. Sample announcement or 3. Sample Press Release 4. Justice Reinvestment Act Fact Sheet & list of legislative sponsors 5. Messaging: Why Jobs Not Jails is important 6. Talking points & statistics about mass incarceration 7. Who's in the Jobs Not Jails Coalition Find a link to this toolkit, as well as editable versions of its internal contents at:
3 JoBS NoT JAILS! JOBS NOT JAILS! Do you want the state to end Mass Incarceration? Do you want the state to fund Job-Creation? Join us! Rally and Public Hearing 12:15PM / Tuesday, June 9 State House, Boston The Justice Reinvestment Act would improve safety and justice, reduce incarceration, and invest millions of $ to create jobs for struggling families A key component of the Justice Reinvestment Act is to end mandatory minimum sentencing for drugs, the topic of the June 9 hearing. Massachusetts is struggling with two diseases: drug addiction and economic exclusion. It s time we stand up to heal both! For more info, contact Lew Finfer: (617) ,
4 SAMpLE or announcement LONGER ANNOUNCEMENT OR Tuesday, June 9th, 12:15pm Rally, 1pm Hearing, MA State House For too long, people have been shut out of real economic opportunity, knocked down by addiction and depression, and locked up in a justice system that fails to protect us, because it is designed for control rather than healing. We believe that #BlackLivesMatter. And we believe that to deny people gainful employment is to deny our very right to exist. What we need to create is an Opportunity Economy, one where everyone who wants to work can work, and be justly rewarded. Now it is time to take action - in the streets as well as at the State House to change the culture and change the laws. On Tuesday, June 9th, the State Legislature is holding a hearing about the Justice Reinvestment Act and ending Mandatory Minimum Sentencing. This is the first hearing on the bill, and our chance to demonstrate that this is important to voters. Join us and the Jobs Not Jails Coalition for a short rally at 12:15PM, and a public hearing at 1PM at the State House in Boston. We're doing the work to build beloved community, and we need you there. Thank you. SHORTER ANNOUNCEMENT OR Tuesday, June 9th, 12:15pm Rally, 1pm Hearing, MA State House We believe that #BlackLivesMatter, and now it is time to take action to end the injustice of mass incarceration. On Tuesday, June 9th, the State Legislature is holding a hearing about the Justice Reinvestment Act and ending Mandatory Minimum Sentencing. This is the first hearing on the bill, and our chance to demonstrate that this is important to voters. Join us for a short rally at 12:15PM, and a public hearing at 1PM at the State House in Boston. We're doing the work to build beloved community, and we need you there. Thank you.
5 MEDIA ADvisory / DrAFT press release Find a link to a google doc of this press release at For immediate release: June 1, 2015 Contact: [Insert your name and number here] Hundreds to Rally at State House to End Mass Incarceration Families demand sweeping reform of Massachusetts criminal justice system BOSTON Families from across the Commonwealth, along with a coalition of 130 faith, labor, and community organizations, will rally at the State House on June 9th to end to mandatory minimum sentencing in Massachusetts and reinvest savings to end mass incarceration once and for all. A cornerstone policy of the War on Drugs, mandatory minimums send drug offenders to prison for long stretches of time, depriving judges of the right to make case-by-case assessments and leaving communities devastated in their wake.  We need to end the policies that lock up our family members for decades and shut us out of the economy for generations, said. The rally will be followed by a joint press conference with the Harm Reduction Caucus and then a hearing [with what committee or who in the legislature?] on mandatory minimums, a central piece of the sweeping Justice Reinvestment Act. Citing the role of poverty in perpetuating mass incarceration, families say that without reinvesting in the communities that have been targeted, Massachusetts will not graduate beyond the New Jim Crow into the 21st century. The coalition proposes to invest the savings from reforms into opportunities for self-sustaining, productive employment serving the common good. If Massachusetts repeals mandatory minimums, it will be the state to do so. Several states, including, have reinvested the savings in job creation. Massachusetts is supposed to be a progressive leader but as of right now, we are behind and when it comes to our justice system says. The War On Drugs has failed in the court of public opinion as seen in the examples of bestselling books like Michelle Alexander s The New Jim Crow and the popular documentary The House I Live In. A bipartisan consensus has emerged nationally on the need to reform the criminal justice system. Recent protests in response to the killings of Michael Brown and Erin Garner have also criticized police practices sanctioned by the War On Drugs that have disproportionately targeted people of color. Jobs Not Jails is the largest campaign against mass incarceration in Massachusetts history. Said, This is the civil rights issue of our time. When we say goodnight to our children, we want to be able to look them in the eyes and tell them we ve done everything we could do. WHAT: Jobs Not Jails Rally to End Mass Incarceration (12PM) Joint press conference with the Harm Reduction Caucus (12:30PM, Room 222 in State House) Legislative hearing on mandatory minimums (1PM, Gardner Auditorium in State House) WHEN: Tuesday, June 9, 2015 WHERE: Massachusetts State House, 24 Beacon St. Boston, MA
6 Justice reinvestment Senate Bill 1874 House Bill 1429 An Act to Increase Neighborhood Safety and opportunity Jobs Not Jails is a coalition of 130 organizations of faith, labor, and community along joining together to advance economic and racial justice by ending mass incarceration and ensuring living wage jobs for all. We believe that just as a body needs exercise and good nutrition to be healthy, a community needs jobs and good incomes. When part of our community is struggling, we can t simply cut it off or ignore it otherwise our community as a whole becomes sick. That s why NOW is the time for Jobs Not Jails! Sen. Sonia Chang-Díaz (D-Boston) and Rep. Mary Keefe (D-Worcester) have filed an omnibus bill backed by our coalition to improve Massachusetts systems of criminal justice, end mass incarceration, and re-invest in our communities through job and educational opportunity expansion. Included in the bill are: I. CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORMS Repeal Mandatory Minimum Drug Sentences This would restore judicial discretion in sentencing for drug charges, reducing the risk of longer than warranted prison terms; Reduce Certain Low-Level Felonies to Misdemeanors Under this scenario certain offenses (such as shoplifting or other petty theft, or low-level drug charges) would be made misdemeanors, with different sanctions that rely less on long and expensive terms of incarceration; End Collateral Sanctions at the RMV This would eliminate the current law requiring the Registry of Motor Vehicles to confiscate the license of any person convicted of any drug offense (even where charges are unrelated to the operation of a vehicle) for up to 5 years and charge at least $500 to reinstate it; and Extraordinary Medical Placement This would allow a judge to decide whether a person who is permanently incapacitated or terminally ill should be transferred out of prison for treatment, remaining under state custody. II. JOBS AND SCHOOLS The final sections of the bill establish a Trust fund with the cost savings from these improvements in the criminal justice system. Trust funds will be used to right our unbalanced economy by investing in evidencebased practices including job development efforts for youth, veterans, victims of violence, and other people with significant barriers to employment, and supporting programs that help at-risk youth to stay in school. Programs supported by the Trust will include: Job training programs to address the skills gaps identified by Massachusetts industry leaders; Transitional job and pre-apprenticeship programs to prepare people for today s workforce and place them in good, living-wage jobs; Youth jobs that provide both sustenance and experience; Initiatives to create new jobs through social enterprises, coops, and other businesses; and Evidence-based programs that specialize in drop-out prevention and recovery, giving youth a second chance at academic achievement and setting them on a path to success. NOTE: Legislators are also filing many of the above sections as separate, individual bills: SD1770/HD1921 Mandatory minimums (Sen. Creem and Rep. Swan); SD1665/HD2584 RMV Collateral Sanctions (Sen. Chandler and Rep. Malia); and SD1417/HD2997 Extraordinary Medical Placement (Sen. Jehlen and Rep. Toomey). For more info, contact: Steve O Neill of EPOCA - (508) , / Rev. Paul Ford of BWA - (617) , / Lew Finfer of MCAN - (617) , / Rachel Corey of CJPC - (617) , / Elena Letona of Neighbor to Neighbor - (617) ,
7 Justice reinvestment Act Co-sponsors NAME: DISTRICT/ADDRESS: Sonia Chang-Diaz Second Suffolk Mary S. Keefe 15th Worcester Christine P. Barber 34th Middlesex William N. Brownsberger Second Suffolk and Middlesex (Senate Only) Evandro Carvalho 5th Suffolk Marjorie C. Decker 25th Middlesex Marcos A. Devers 16th Essex Kenneth J. Donnelly Fourth Middlesex (Senate Only) James B. Eldridge Middlesex and Worcester Linda Dorcena Forry First Suffolk Gloria L. Fox 7th Suffolk Carlos, Gonzalez 10th Hampden Russell E. Holmes 6th Suffolk Patricia D. Jehlen Second Middlesex Jay R. Kaufman 15th Middlesex Jason M. Lewis Fifth Middlesex Jay Livingstone 8th Suffolk Elizabeth A. Malia 11th Suffolk Thomas M. McGee Third Essex (Senate Only) Byron Rushing 9th Suffolk Tom Sannicandro 7th Middlesex Benjamin Swan 11th Hampden Aaron Vega 5th Hampden Daniel A. Wolf Cape and Islands Tricia Farley-Bouvier 3rd Berkshire Denise Provost 27th Middlesex Peter V. Kocot 1st Hampshire Sheriff Steven Tompkins Suffolk County Sheriff 20 Bradston Boston, MA Carmine Gentile 13th Middlesex Frank A. Moran 17th Essex David M. Rogers 24th Middlesex Daniel M. Donahue 16th Worcester Timothy R. Madden Barnstable, Dukes and Nantucket James J. O Day 14th Worcester
8 Anne M. Gobi Brian M. Ashe Jonathan Hecht Claire D. Cronin Daniel J. Ryan Frank I. Smizik Ruth B. Balser Kay Khan Elizabeth A. Poirier John J. Lawn, Jr. Gailanne M. Cariddi Michael D. Brady Kenneth I. Gordon John J. Mahoney Sal N. DiDomenico Paul R. Heroux Danielle W. Gregoire Brendan P. Crighton Ellen Story Sean Garballey John J. Mahoney Stephen L. DiNatale Alice Hanlon Peisch Chris Walsh Worcester, Hampden, Hampshire and Middlesex 2nd Hampden 29th Middlesex 11th Plymouth 2nd Suffolk 15th Norfolk 12th Middlesex 11th Middlesex 14th Bristol 10th Middlesex 1st Berkshire 9th Plymouth 21st Middlesex 13th Worcester Middlesex and Suffolk (Senate Only) 2nd Bristol 4th Middlesex 11th Essex (Senate Only) 3rd Hampshire (House Only) 23rd Middlesex (House Only) 13th Worcester (House Only) 3rd Worcester (House Only) 14th Norfolk (House Only) 6th Middlesex (House Only)
9 Jobs Not Jails BASIC MESSAGING From Mason Square in Springfield to Grove Hall in Boston, people are shut out of real economic opportunity, knocked down by addiction and depression, and locked up in a justice system that fails to protect us, because it is designed for control rather than healing. We live in an economy of exclusion. This economy considers many of us to be unemployable and disposable. What does this society do with people it sees as useless? It fears us. It tries to forget us. It pushes us to the margins. It sends us away to prison. All too often, it shoots us down in the street. We believe that #BlackLivesMatter. And we believe that to deny people gainful employment is to deny our very right to exist. What we need to create is an Opportunity Economy, one where everyone who wants to work can work, and be justly rewarded. Now is the time to take action. We are calling on our friends, families, and the public to put an end to the New Jim Crow in Massachusetts by ending mass incarceration and funding job creation. We are taking action in the streets as well as the State House to change the culture and change the laws. We need to be smart on crime instead of tough on crime. The hurt and harm that crime causes is real; so is the hurt and harm that poverty creates; the changes we seek will not only increase public safety but also bring opportunity where there were once chains. None of us is disposable. Each of us, young and old, black, white, and brown, disabled or unemployed, has gifts to share with the world. This economy shuts out, knocks down, and locks up. Instead, we call on everyone to join us in building something new, building something better, and building something that affirms our dignity. We need to create a pathway to opportunity, where no gift is denied, and where not one life is cast aside. #JobsNotJails #BlackLivesMatter
10 Talking points & STATISTICS Our society is unbalanced and unequal. We are a nation under guard, employing more private security guards than high school teachers for the first time in history. We are employing more people to protect some of us from the rest of us than we are paying to educate our teenagers. Massachusetts rate of incarceration has ballooned to three times what it was thirty years ago. We incarcerate a higher percentage of our people than almost any country in the world, and ten times as many as most developed countries. Over 60% of people who have been involved in the justice system return to jail within three years. That means our justice system is making crime more likely, not less. This increase in incarceration and control is not related to an increase or decrease in crime. Crime rates have risen and fallen throughout the last thirty years at various times, but the incarceration rate has always continued to grow. This is because it is driven by bad public policy such as mandatory minimum sentencing and not by the needs of public safety. Mandatory minimum sentences cause people to serve long sentences, or to plead guilty out of fear of long sentences, who are not guilty or who should have been sent to treatment instead. Judges have no power to effect a just outcome in these cases. The current system of justice creates a matrix of harm that victimizes ex-prisoners, their families, the community, and taxpayers. What does that matrix look like?» It looks like prisoners who are inevitably scarred by the prison sentence. Prison conditions and solitary confinement are destructive to physical and mental health. Families lose a parent and breadwinner;» It looks like ex-prisoners who carry a CORI for either 10 years (if convicted of a felony) or 5 years if they are convicted of a misdemeanor. CORI s make it extremely difficult for ex-prisoners to secure good jobs and adequate housing; The bottom line: those who are returning home from prison need a good job, a roof over their heads, and adequate community support systems if they are going to succeed. Those without this firm foundation in place are more likely to commit a new offense; each new offense means more harm to the community, more court and prison costs, and it means further costs to families who again lose a parent and breadwinner. People who are Black and Latino do not use or sell drugs more than other people, but are incarcerated far more than people of other races. Only 18% of Massachusetts population is Black or Latino, 55% of the prison population are. This is due to racial disparities at every stage in the process, from arrest and arraignment to trial and sentencing. THIS COSTS US ALL $47,000 a year to house a prisoner Costs to prosecute a defendant
11 Costs to families when they lose a breadwinner and parent Other costs to taxpayers of lost taxes when people are in prison and not working, come out and are unemployed and/or work at low wage jobs TREATMENT VS. INCARCERATION Suffolk County Sheriff Steve Tompkins estimated that based on intakes to inmates in his jail, 85% had drug problems and 42% had mental illness. Many defendants could be sent to treatment if there were more Drug Courts, Mental Health Courts, and we did not have long mandatory minimum sentences for drug offenses BARRIER UPON BARRIER Those serving mandatory minimum sentences for drug offenses are not eligible for inprison programs! A person convicted of a drug offenses also loses his or her driver s license, and must pay at least $500 to regain their driver s licenses. Having a license is required for many jobs. Larceny of over $250 is a felony leading to 10 year CORI while most would say larceny of smaller amounts is much less serious than other felonies. Had this threshold kept up with inflation, it would be $1,300 today. AN UNBALANCED JOB MARKET It is very expensive to survive in Massachusetts: An adult with one one child needs to make $23 an hour working 40 hours a week ($46,000 / year) to be economically self-sufficient in Massachusetts. Many people never have a chance to earn this much. Those jobs that are a bridge to self-sufficiency are disappearing in Massachusetts. Most of the jobs created in recent years are either high-end jobs paying over $26 an hour, or very low-end jobs paying $10 an hour. Many Massachusetts neighborhoods have been locked in poverty for decades, with unemployment rates at depression-era levels. Racism remains a big factor, not only in the legacy of past stolen wages (leading to an average wealth gap of $247,500 between black and white families), but also in current-day employability. Black applicants are half as likely to receive a call back from an employer as equally qualified white applicants. People who live in depressed neighborhoods, who have criminal records or are the victims of crime, who are veterans or youth, or who did not graduate high school, have extraordinary barriers to employment that need to be addressed. It is in everyone s interest to address these needs, and ensure that living-wage jobs are accessible to everyone. The drug trade is always hiring. There are successful programs that help people overcome even the greatest obstacles, but they need more funding to meet the need, and to spread state-wide. The United Teen Empowerment Center (UTEC) in Lowell provides good jobs and services to young people who have been involved in gangs or incarcerated, and their success rate is incredible: only 2% of these young people go on to commit crime in the future, compared to an average of over 60% for most people released from jail. We need to invest in programs like UTEC in every part of the state, and help them to build and expand their current work.
12 WHo's in the Jobs Not Jails Coalition Ordinary people in Massachusetts who believe in civil rights, who want to see an end to mass incarceration and the New Jim Crow, and believe opportunity should knock on every door. Community Groups: Boston Worker s Alliance, Neighbor to Neighbor, EPOCA (Ex- Prisoners Organizing for Community Advancement), Coalition for Social Justice, NAACP Boston, Pioneer Valley Project, Essex County Community Organization, Brockton Interfaith Community, Youth Jobs Coalition, ACLU, Prisoner s Legal, MA Law Reform Institute, Criminal Justice Policy Coalition, Dorchester People for Peace Religious Faith groups: Black Ministerial Alliance, Boston Ten Point Coalition,, Unitarian Universalist Social Action, Massachusetts Communities Action Network (MCAN) Labor Unions: SEIU 1199, SEIU 509, and Carpenters Union Locals 106 and 107 Steering committee members Black and Pink Brockton Interfaith Community (BIC) Boston Workers Alliance (BWA) Carpenters Local Union 107 Carpenters Local Union 108 Coalition for Effective Public Safety (CEPS) Coalition for Social Justice Criminal Justice Policy Coalition (CJPC) Essex County Community Organization (ECCO) Ex-Prisoners and Prisoners Organizing for Community Advancement (EPOCA) Massachusetts Communities Action Network (MCAN) NAACP Boston Chapter Neighbor to Neighbor (N2NMA) Pioneer Valley Project (PVP) Prisoners Legal Services of Massachusetts (PLSMA) SEIU Local 509 SEIU Local 1199 St. Vincent de Paul Society Re-entry Project United Teen Empowerment Center (UTEC) Youth Jobs Coalition (YJC) #jobsnotjails #blacklivesmatter
13 participating organizations Action for Regional Equity ACT UP Boston AIDS Project Worcester American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts American Friends Service Committee Arise for Social Justice, Springfield Arlington Street Church (Boston)- Social Action Committee 10-Point Coalition Bangladesh Workers Solidarity Network Black and Pink Blackstonian.com Boston Feminist Liberation Boston Living Center Boston Coalition for Palestinian Rights Boston New Sanctuary Movement Boston Public Health Commission Boston Street Medics Boston Taxi Drivers Association Boston Workers Alliance Brockton Interfaith Community Carpenters Local 107 Carpenters Local 108 Catholic Campaign for Human Development Children s League of Massachusetts Cleghorn Neighborhood Center, Fitchburg Coalition for Effective Public Safety Coalition for Social Justice, Fall River and New Bedford Coalition to Fund our Communities Committee of Friends and Relatives of Prisoners Committee for Public Counsel Services Community Labor United Congregation Dorshei Tzedek Cooperative Metropolitan Ministries Criminal Justice Policy Coalition Dismas House Dorchester People for Peace Elevate Boston Foundation, Inc Ending Mass Incarceration Together EPOCA (Ex-prisoners and Prisoners Organizing for Community Advancment) Essex County Community Organization (ECCO) Everett Community Health Partnership The Fact She3t Families for Justice as Healing Families Against Mandatory Minimums First Church in Cambridge, Missions and Social Justice Committee First Parish in Bedford Unitarian Universalist First Parish, Brookline First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church of Northborough Fitchburg Minority Coalition Freedom Road Socialist Organization (FRSO)
14 Fresh Pond Friends Meeting Friends Meeting at Cambridge Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders (GLAD) Green Rainbow Party Grove Hall Neighborhood Development Corporation Hampshire Franklin Central Labor Council Harvard Divinity School Prison Education Project Harvard Law Prison Assistance Legal Project Hispanic Black Gay Coalition Lesley College PAWS Lucy Stone Cooperative Lynn Youth Street Outreach Advocacy (LYSOA) Massachusetts Communities Action Network Massachusetts CURE Mass Incarceration Working Group of the First Parish Unitarian Universalist of Arlington MassOccupy/Brookline Massachusetts Jobs With Justice Massachusetts Organization for Addiction Recovery (MOAR) Massachusetts Women s Justice Network Melrose Unitarian Universalist Church Men of Color Health Awareness (MOCHA), Springfield Mission and Social Justice Committee of First Church in Cambridge, UCC Moishe Kavod House Mothers for Justice and Equality Multicultural Wellness Center NAACP Boston Chapter NAACP Youth Council, Boston Chapter National Association of Social Workers, Massachusetts Chapter National Lawyers Guild Neighbor to Neighbor New England Regional Council of Carpenters Occupy Middlesex County Occupy Quincy Occupy Winchester Old Cambridge Baptist Church Partakers Pioneer Valley Project Prison Book Program Prison Policy Initiative Progressive Massachusetts Prisoners Legal Services of Massachusetts (PLSMA) Real Cost of Prisons Project Roxbury Defenders Roxbury Youth Works SEIU Local 509 SEIU Local 888 SEIU Local 1199 St. John Missionary Baptist Church St. Vincent de Paul Society Re-Entry Project Social Action Ministry of First Parish Lexington SPAN, Inc. Spontaneous Celebrations Beantown Society Straight Ahead Ministries
15 Survivors, Inc. System Change Not Climate Change Teen Empowerment Teens Leading the Way Temple Hillel B nai Torah, West Roxbury The People s Cafe, Brookline Theodore Parker Church, West Roxbury Three Pyramids, Inc./The Minority Coalition Timothy Baptist Church Toastmasters Prison Volunteers Unitarian Universalist Mass Action Unitarian Universalist Urban Ministry Unitarian Universalist Church of Wakefield Transformative Justice and Violence Prevention Ministry UNITE HERE Local 26 United Church of Christ, Innocence Commission Task Force United First Parish Church Outreach Committee, Quincy United for a Fair Economy United for Justice and Peace USW Local 8751 United Teen Empowerment Center (UTEC) Veterans for Peace Women s International League for Peace & Freedom Worcester Branch, NAACP Worcester Community Labor Coalition Worcester Homeless Action Committee Worcester Interfaith Worcester Unemployment Action Group Worcester Youth Center Youth Against Mass Incarceration Youth Jobs Coalition
16 Last Updated May 2015