Reimagining Justice in the Commonwealth
Did you know that MA has one of the lowest rates of incarceration in the U.S.? Currently, there are only 158 women incarcerated at MCI Framingham, the only women's prison in the state. While the incarceration rates have decreased at least 21% over the past decade, spending on incarceration has increased 25%. Despite the low rate of incarceration, the Department of Correction is attempting to build a new $50 million women’s prison in Norfolk County for the purpose of housing the 158 women now at MCI Framingham and generations of women to come.
It is time to reimagine justice in the Commonwealth and look toward alternatives to incarceration, particularly given the declining prison population and the research showing that prison is not a system of effective rehabilitation or healing. It is well known that the vast majority of women incarcerated in the state live in poverty and survived domestic and sexual violence prior to their incarceration and if they are able to receive treatment in prison it is woefully inadequate. Formerly incarcerated women are then released back into their communities to face the same social conditions and the same lack of resources that contributed to their incarceration. Imagine the impact if the $50 million budget was utilized to create a residential reentry program that could address the root causes that lead women to commit crimes instead of perpetuating trauma and the cycle of repeated prison terms. To learn more, please see the resources at the end of this post.
Join Our Advocacy Committee
SREA is actively seeking 1-2 individuals to join our Advocacy Committee to support racial justice organizing efforts, with a current focus on this effort to prevent the building of a new women’s prison in Norfolk county. Please contact us by email at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about this opportunity.