After the success of the civil rights movement in the 1950s and 1960s...
Those in power fought back through an era of mass incarceration. The United States now incarcerates more of its citizens than any other nation. A strong civil rights stand is needed again in the 21st century to reclaim past victories. Executive Director Soffiyah Elijah, a defender of the human rights for the last 35 years, launched The Alliance of Families of Justice in 2016 as the bridge to a modern era of civil rights. Technology doesn't make civil rights tactics obsolete. Nothing replaces the human spirit of people coming together for justice. But technological advances can amplify our voice and multiply our impact. This is the unique strategy of the Alliance of Families for Justice.
The civil rights strategy of civil disobedience and public protest implemented civil rights leaders remain relevant today.
The Alliance of Families for Justice seeks to end mass incarceration by empowering the formerly incarcerated and their families:
Re-entry support services
AFJ refers family members and formerly incarcerated individuals for counseling support services. We provide monthly "Welcome Home" events and care packages for those returning to society. Each returning citizen is provided with a "buddy" for a year to help navigate a safe and productive return with plenty of encouragement.
The criminal justice system has a long record of human rights abuses. AFJ refers to a pool of pro bono attorneys to provide legal support for individuals and family members whose human rights have been violated during their incarceration in prisons and local jails.
Advocacy and Communication Skills training
In partnership with the Advocacy Institute and the Opportunity Agenda, AFJ trains a select cohort of family members and formerly incarcerated individuals in advocacy and communications skills that empowers them and amplifies their voices.
Many states ban those with a felony on their criminal records from voting. This assures ongoing disempowerment. New York allows formerly incarcerated to vote. We seek to empower the formerly incarcerated and their families to use that right through voter registration and voter education.