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Prison Reform

Prison Reform Task Force

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Below are some actions and events that move us toward our goal of treatment instead of prison related to drug and alcohol offenses for non-violent offenders.  We are working to gain additional funding to support treatment and alternatives to incarceration. Unless otherwise noted, events are free and open to the public.

For more information, contact the chair, Lisa Hanneman.

Fox Cities People & Politics

Date: 
Wednesday, June 1, 2022 - 1:00pm - 4:00pm
Location: 
Legends Cuts & Styles, Fox River Mall, 4301 W Wisconsin Ave, Appleton

Fox Cities People & Politics. We'll be discussing Unlock the Vote, storytelling around the constitutional amendment, and hearing from elected officials, candidates and appointees who impact us as System-Impacted People


Sponsored by EXPO, FREE, Legends Cuts & Styles and ESTHER. Follow the Facebook event page for latest information.

Help spread the word! Download and share the attached flier.

EXPO/FREE Meeting

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Date: 
Tuesday, May 10, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
Location: 
Most Blessed Sacrament Church 448 High Avenue Oshkosh

We will be serving food & beverage, and child supervision is available for school-age children. In addition, rides can be arranged. All are welcome! Come join us and let's reimagine justice in Winnebago County!

If you have any questions, contact Marianne Oleson at marianne@expowisconsin.org

EXPO Empathy Day of Action

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A couple weeks ago, I had the privilege of going to the state capital in Madison for EXPO’s Empathy Day of Action. We spent the day learning from EXPO leaders, senators, and representatives on Unlock the Vote and AJR 107. Using the information we learned, we got to have conversations with our legislators, representatives, and their staff. We met with those who voted in favor of AJR 107 which is a constitutional amendment that was created after the Waukesha parade tragedy. 

This amendment would change the eligibility and release conditions prior to a conviction. This amendment would also create a stricter cash bail system by making it possible for judges to consider past criminal history when setting bail charges. Setting higher bail charges would punish low-income people and keep more people incarcerated if they cannot pay bail. 

Shackling of Pregnant Incarcerated Women

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At ESTHER’s most recent Mental Health Task Force meeting, we were joined by two women who educated us on an issue that is currently affecting incarcerated pregnant women. 

One of the women who joined us was Felicia Turner-Walton, who is the CEO and Founder of Healing Our Hearts. This is a non-profit based out of Madison that provides support to those that have experienced loss. This organization is committed to providing an understanding of grief that is centered around black and brown communities. 

The issue they covered during our meeting was the injustice of shackling and how it affects incarcerated pregnant women. Prisons have historically been designed by men, for men. Inmate treatment has therefore not taken into account women’s specific needs. Pregnant inmates are thus shackled while receiving medical care because that is how all inmates are treated. Shackling is an inhumane and dangerous practice as it limits the medical care that can be provided due to the restraints and it puts more stress on the pregnant woman or birthing mother.

When I first learned of this practice during our meeting, I had a mixture of feelings. On one hand, I was shocked to learn about this inhumane practice. On the other hand, I was not surprised as prison systems have historically been created to control black and brown communities. These systems of control therefore do not take into account the specific indignities that pregnant women face and the different treatment they need to receive. 

 

EXPO/FREE Meeting

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Date: 
Tuesday, April 5, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
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Tuesday, May 10, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
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Tuesday, June 7, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
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Tuesday, July 5, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
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Tuesday, August 2, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
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Tuesday, September 6, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
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Tuesday, October 4, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
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Tuesday, November 1, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
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Tuesday, December 6, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
Location: 
Most Blessed Sacrament Church 448 High Avenue Oshkosh

We will be serving food & beverage, and child supervision is available for school-age children. In addition, rides can be arranged. All are welcome! Come join us and let's reimagine justice in Winnebago County!

If you have any questions, contact Marianne Oleson at marianne@expowisconsin.org

Taking on Mass Incarceration in Wisconsin

Date: 
Thursday, January 27, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
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Thursday, February 3, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
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Thursday, February 10, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
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Thursday, February 17, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
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Thursday, February 24, 2022 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm
Location: 
Zoom Meeting

Join the Transformational Justice Campaign leaders of EXPO and WISDOM for a 5-part Zoom series on mass incarceration in Wisconsin.

When: Thursday evenings, 6:30-8:00 p.m., January 27, February 3, 10, 17, 24

Register here: Taking on Mass Incarceration - Jan 27-Feb 24

(These programs will be recorded for later viewing by registrants who cannot attend all sessions.)

In the series, we will learn from experts, including people directly impacted by Wisconsin’s criminal legal system. We will learn about many aspects of the system, including:

ESTHER Prison Reform Task Force

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Date: 
Monday, January 3, 2022 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
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Monday, February 7, 2022 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
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Monday, March 7, 2022 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
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Monday, April 4, 2022 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
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Monday, May 2, 2022 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
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Monday, June 6, 2022 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
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Monday, July 4, 2022 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
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Monday, August 1, 2022 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
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Monday, September 5, 2022 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
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Monday, October 3, 2022 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
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Monday, November 7, 2022 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
Date: 
Monday, December 5, 2022 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
Location: 
St. Mark's Lutheran Church, 140 South Green Bay Road, Neenah

Meets in person first Monday of each month from 6:00-7:30 pm. (The September meeting is held on the second Monday.)

Leave us a message at https://esther-foxvalley.org/prtf with questions or to be added to the mailing list.

“We can’t punish people into being healthy. We need for families to stay intact and for offenders to be responsible to their communities. We are all better off when people can be healed and made whole through these effective programs that bring accountability to the offender and to the community. Alternative treatment programs work better than incarceration.”

ESTHER is part of the statewide ROC WI (Restore Our Communities) Campaign. The campaign is a movement of people of faith calling for change in the Wisconsin system of incarceration.

Locked Up On The Outside: Prisons Without Walls

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Date: 
Thursday, October 21, 2021 - 6:00pm - 8:00pm
Location: 
St. Mark's Lutheran Church, 140 S. Green Bay Rd, Neenah

The ESTHER Prison Reform Task Force along with EXPO will be holding this important listening session and crucial conversation with a representative of the Wisconsin Division of Community Corrections (DCC), elected officials and YOU.

Are you, or do you know someone who is or has been, on probation or parole? Do you live in fear, have anxiety that rules or attitudes could take you back to prison? Do you have thoughts on how re-entry could be improved to make people more successful on Parole or Extended Supervision?

Then please join EXPO and ESTHER at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Neenah for this important conversation regarding community corrections.

 

Building a Theology of Restoration and Fairness in Wisconsin

Date: 
Saturday, July 10, 2021 - 9:30am - 11:30am
Location: 
Zoom Meeting

Building a Theology of Restoration and Fairness

A Multifaith Response to End Mass Incarceration

Why should faith communities be involved in the work to end mass incarceration?

Featuring reflections from Senator Raphael G. Warnock, Senior Pastor of the historic Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta and founding member of the Multifaith Initiative to End Mass Incarceration.

Who Should Attend

Leaders and members of congregations from various faith traditions in Wisconsin, those who are engaged in jail and/or prison ministry and want to do more, and those who are ready to partner with faith communities to reduce incarceration rates in Wisconsin.

REGISTER AT https://tinyurl.com/EMI-Wisconsin

For more information, contact: Joya Schmidt at jschmidt@the-temple.org

Sponsored by the Multifaith Initiative to End Mass Incarceration.

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