Watch Mass Incarceration 101
Learn why mass incarceration is one of the key racial justice issues of our time.
This webinar aims to develop and build on viewers' understanding of mass incarceration in the United States and explores why we must fight the crisis of incarceration as a racial justice issue. It includes a basic overview of the statistics, conditions and racial and economic causes and consequences of mass incarceration.
Today the United States leads the world in incarceration rates. There are now over 2.2 million people in our jails and prisons. This constitutes a 500 percent increase over the past 40 years. Prior to viewing this webinar, participants should review the Sentencing Project’s fact sheet on Trends in U.S. Corrections; see what incarceration rates look like in your state as well as how incarceration impacts people of color, youth and women. As people of faith, our call to realize racial and economic justice is now louder than ever before. We encourage you to view and listen deeply to this prerecorded webinar on mass incarceration so that we all might learn more about how communities are naming the problem of incarceration and organizing to resist it.
The webinar is followed by a Q and A with speaker Dr. Iva Carruthers as she addresses some of the most frequently asked questions that United Methodist Women members and others ask about mass incarceration. These questions include:
- We keep hearing about the impact of incarceration on black and brown men, but what are the impacts of mass incarceration on women and children?
- Aren’t the recent protests and the new movement for black lives divisive and anti-police?
- Isn’t what occurred in Ferguson, Staten Island, Baltimore and elsewhere really more an issue of economics and not race?
- I treat people like I want to be treated, but I keep hearing about systemic racism. What is systemic racism and how does it impact me as a white person?
- What can I do to begin to undo systemic racism and stop the mass criminalization of communities of color?
Speaker: Dr. Iva E. Carruthers, Executive Director of the Samuel D. Proctor Conference
National Seminar 2015
A plenary, outings and an action at this Chicago event focused on highlighting concrete ways that people in communities are responding to and resisting mass incarceration. We heard from four speakers, each looking at mass incarceration in a different context: faith based, from a racial justice perspective, youth led, and in the immigrant justice movement. The speakers addressed a variety of questions to help National Seminar participants go home with tools to mobilize for racial justice and against mass incarceration in their communities. The panel speakers discussed:
- What does reconciliation mean from a Wesleyan theological perspective?
- What are the campaigns that you are working on?
- How does your work look beyond reforming policy to more transformative justice?
- What can United Methodist Women do locally and nationally?
In collaboration with the mass incarceration plenary team, the public action focused on highlighting issues of mass incarceration in the Chicago area and nationally. In partnership with the Community Renewal Society (CRS), we addressed various aspects of mass incarceration through this public action, that included FORCE (opposing mandatory minimums) and the Reclaim Campaign (violence reduction and restorative justice). CRS is a partner of the Northern Illinois Annual Conference in its work on mass incarceration.
Spotlight on Mass Incarceration at National Seminar 2015
The public witness focused on highlighting issues of mass incarceration in the Chicago area and nationally. In partnership with the Community Renewal Society (CRS), we addressed various aspects of mass incarceration through this public action, that included FORCE (opposing mandatory minimums) and the Reclaim Campaign (violence reduction and restorative justice). CRS is a partner of the Northern Illinois Annual Conference in its work on mass incarceration.