Building Bridges

The monthly newsletter of the Prison Action Network

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Sunday, October 12, 2008

OCTOBER 2008, SPECIAL FED4 EDITION

CONTINUES AFTER THESE ANNOUNCEMENTS:




POSTED OCTOBER 31, 72 HOURS BEFORE ELECTION DAY:

PLEASE VOTE!
As the barrage of negative ads intensifies, watch this new US election ad from Avaaz members calling for hope, tolerance and change. Watch the Ad now and send it to everyone you know!



POSTED OCTOBER 23 -

Here's a look at the Jerico Movement to Free all Political Prisoners.  For those of you who missed the struggles of the 60's and 70's this is your chance to participate in its reemergence.  This episode of All Things Harlem covers the African American Day Parade in Harlem as well as the aftermath of the parade. Produced by Joseph 'Jazz' Hayden. Click here to watch it..



Building Bridges, October 2008

Dear Reader,

In less than two weeks it’ll be Family Empowerment Day 4/ NYC. When your next issue arrives, we’ll know what goal was chosen and what steps we’re taking to achieve it. Many of you have sacrificed to support this event. Your sacrifices are seen; they have inspired others to sacrifice, and together we are moving forward with our dream of a new world, where we create the changes we want to see. Look at what you’ve done already! Family Empowerment Day has grown from an idea tossed around by a few men in prison to an annual event attended by hundreds of hopeful people ready to turn their dream of justice into a reality. Humans need hope to stay alive. It’s as vital as food and water. Without it we lose energy and feel depressed all the time. But it’s so hard to maintain. So many times we’ve risen up only to be smashed down again and again. You are so brave to risk hope!! On October 25th let’s bring all that hope into one space and turn it into action! My hope is that I’ll see you there.

If we are to succeed at our ambitious plan, everyone needs to get to Columbia Law School between 9 and 9:30am so we can start on time! We have a full day ahead of us, and every part of it is preparation for the last session of the day, when we make our decision. We don’t want to get to the last session and only have 10 minutes left to pick a goal and plan how to achieve it. That would be a real let-down. So plan to be on time, attend every session, and be prepared to learn everything you can! Bring your goal for us to vote on, and form your question for Chairman Alexander so we can know where he stands with regard to your goal.

At the end of the day, we will have only just begun. In this time of economic insecurity, we are going to need to find time and energy, and yes, money, to do whatever it is we decide is worth doing. It’s time to get serious about putting our lives on the line for justice. We want these changes, and no one else has as much energy and commitment to create them as we do. It’s going to take real commitment on our part. Family Empowerment Day is the beginning. See you there!

Please send your donation in support of Family Empowerment Day 4 to Prison Action Network, at our new address: PO Box 6355, Albany NY 12206. Every dollar counts!


In this Issue

1. Census figures impact NYS economy and politics
2. DOCS budget reductions
3. Governor Paterson's new website
4. Females in prison have it rougher
5. FED4/Albany
6. Lifers and longtermers clearinghouse
7. Parole
8. Prison media
9. Reentry
10. Transportation to prisons
11. Voting while on parole
12. What's happening around New York State



1. CENSUS FIGURES HAVE ECONOMIC AND POLITICAL IMPACT ON NYS SENATE DISTRICTS SAYS PETER WAGNER IN AN ARTICLE ORIGINALLY APPEARING IN OPEN SOCIETY NEWS. [Click here to read the whole article.]

In New York State, seven rural state senate districts with large prisons would not meet the U.S. Supreme Court's minimum population requirements without counting the prison population as local residents. Four of those prison-district senators sit on the powerful Codes Committee and oppose reforming the state's draconian Rockefeller drug laws, which boost the state's prison population by mandating harsh penalties. The inflated populations of these senators' districts give them political power and little incentive to consider or pursue policies that might reduce the numbers of people sent to prison and the length of time they spend there. Republican New York State Senator Dale Volker, boasts that he is glad that the almost 9,000 people confined in his district cannot vote because "they would never vote for me."

In New York, the state legislature relied on 2000 census data to update district boundaries and wound up drawing one legislative district in which 7 percent of people were in prison.



2. DOCS BUDGET REDUCTIONS FOCUS PRIMARILY ON DORMITORY CONSOLIDATIONS AND A REDUCTION OF INMATE COMMUNITY CREWS from a DOCS press release: Click here for DOCS website.

NYS DOCS plans to improve the efficiency of its operations without impacting public safety or security. The plan will achieve savings of $81.6 million and was in response to Gov.. Paterson’s call for all state agencies to reduce spending by 3.35% in order to balance the state budget.

The reduction in the number of inmate community work crews is expected to result in a reduction of 48 COs through attrition. Inmate community crews will be reduced at Butler, Camp McGregor, Camp Gabriels, Camp Georgetown, Camp Pharsalia, Mid-State and Groveland Annexes. Crews will be eliminated at Gowanda and Otisville .

Dormitory populations will be consolidated at 17 medium and minimum security prisons and annexes - Adirondack, Collins, Gowanda, Groveland Annex, Hudson, Mid-Orange, Mohawk, Ogdensbury, Oneida, Otisville, Washington Annex, Watertown; and Butler, Camp McGregor, Lakeview, as well as the minimum security portion of Mid-State. Fishkill will vacate one floor of an SHU area. This results in moving approximately 1000 inmates to existing vacant beds, most of them within their current facility, and virtually all affected COs will move to other posts within their current facility. No beds will be affected at maximum security facilities, where the inmate population has not declined.



3. GOV. PATERSON ANNOUNCED ON OCTOBER 7, 2008 HIS INTENTION TO SEEK REELECTION TO THE GOVERNOR'S CHAIR IN 2010.
ON HIS INTERACTIVE WEBSITE: WWW.PATERSONFORNY.COM, HE PROMISES AN ACCOUNTABLE ADMINISTRATION WITH OPEN COMMUNICATIONS ABOUT ISSUES HE’S LOOKING AT OR POSITIONS HE’S TAKING, USING THE SITE AS WELL AS BLOGS, EMAILS, AND LIVE ONLINE TOWN HALLS.

"When I took office less than a year ago, I promised a candid, open and accountable administration, which in my mind requires nothing less than a frank and ongoing conversation with the people of New York. This is particularly true when it comes to conversations regarding the issues I am focusing on or the positions I am taking. To ensure that my administration meets the litmus test of accountability I need to hear from you.

I see this website as a critically important tool in extending and expanding this dialogue. I will use the site along with blogs, emails, and live online Town Halls to engage in a candid conversation about the wide range of issues that confront us today: from economic recovery and job creation to healthcare to the rebuilding of Ground Zero and the restoration of the Upstate economy. In return, I hope, and expect, you will use the site to share your ideas and opinions with me. To facilitate this exchange we’ve created a section called YOUR VOICE to showcase a broad spectrum of views, and I anticipate a lively discussion.

In addition, on the site you will find sections such as: News, The Future, and Getting Involved. These sections highlight what we’ve accomplished thus far in the Paterson administration, what we are looking to do going forward, and how everyday New Yorkers can play a role. Finally, the site offers photographs and videos which provide a snapshot of my biography, travels and interactions across the state, and interviews on relevant events and issues.

The internet offers us an incredible opportunity to get beyond the sound bites and talk at length about the issues facing our state. This is why I plan to be an active and frequent participant in the online community.

We are going through incredibly difficult times as a state and a nation. However, I know that if we work together, if you know where I stand and I know what you need, we can rise and meet ANY, and ALL, challenges head on.

I hope you will be an enthusiastic participant in an ongoing discussion around the future of our state, our communities, and our families. For starters, you can tell me what you think of PatersonforNY.com. Let’s make this an interesting conversation and a real partnership.”

David A. Paterson
Governor of New York



4. FEMALE PRISONERS NOT ONLY FACE WORSE CONDITIONS IN PRISON, BUT THEY SUFFER FROM PUBLIC MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT THEIR CRIMES AS WELL. Posted on December 5, 2006 http://www.alternet.org/story/45149/

Women's prisons are understaffed, overcrowded, lack recreation facilities, serve poor quality food, suffer chronic shortages of family planning counselors and services,gynecological specialists, drug treatment, child care facilities, and transportation funds for family visits.

Female prisoners face the added peril of rape, and insensitive treatment during pregnancy. A United Nations report in 1997 found that more than two dozen states permitted pregnant women to be shackled while being transported to hospitals for treatment. A report by the National Corrections Information Center revealed that the U.S. is one of only a handful of countries that allow men to guard women, often unsupervised. Author Donna Ann-Smith Marshall, who served several years at Central California Women's Facility, California's top maximum security prison, in her new book, Time on the Inside, tells in shocking and graphic detail the callous, often brutal treatment many women are subjected to in women's maximum security jails.

Unfortunately, the tepid public debate over the consequence of locking up so many women is riddled with misconceptions. One is that women commit violent crimes for the same reasons that men do. They don't. Women are less likely than men to assault or murder strangers while committing crimes. Two-thirds of the women jailed assaulted or killed relatives or intimates. Their victims were often spouses, lovers, or boyfriends. In many cases they committed violence defending themselves against sexual or physical abuse. Women's groups and even the more enlightened governors have recognized that women that kill abusive husbands or lovers have acted out of fear and have loosened parole standards. The governors have granted some women earlier release from their sentences.

More women, and especially black women, are behind bars as much because of hard punishment than their actual crimes. One out of three crimes committed by women are drug related. Many state and federal sentencing laws mandate minimum sentences for all drug offenders. This virtually eliminates the option of referring non- violent first time offenders to increasingly scarce, financially strapped drug treatment, counseling and education programs. Stiffer punishment for crack cocaine use also has landed more black women in prison, and for longer sentences than white women (and men).
There is little sign that this will change. The public and policy makers are deeply rapped in the damaging cycle of myths, misconceptions and crime fear hysteria about crime-on-the-loose women. They are loath to ramp up funds and programs for job and skills training, drug treatment, education, childcare and health, and parenting skills. Yet, this is still the best way to keep more women from winding up behind bars.

By Earl Ofari Hutchinson, AlterNet



5. THE FAMILY EMPOWERMENT PROJECT ANNOUNCES ALBANY’S EVENT ON NOV 22

SAVE THE DATE!
SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 22, 2008
FAMILY EMPOWERMENT DAY 4 - ALBANY

A Round-Table Discussion:
HEALTH CARE NEEDS OF THE INCARCERATED

Join other families, formerly incarcerated people, health care providers and advocates as we take an in-depth look at the needs of the physically ill, the mentally ill, and the aging prison population.

Contact us if you or someone you know would like to be part of this discussion.

Prison Action Network, PO Box 6355, Albany NY 12208
518 253 7533
prisonactionnetwork@gmail.com

TIME: 10- 2
PLACE: 405 Washington Avenue (near Robin)
Albany NY



6. LIFERS AND LONGTERMERS CLEARINGHOUSE - THE OPOSSUM ON THE RAZOR WIRE, BY DON MASON

An opossum was crawling up a chain-link fence. Each time it took a step higher its feet were completely wrapped around the links. The opossum thought it had everything under control. It continued on up squeezing through the razor wire. The opossum then decided to take a leisurely stroll on top of the fence in the middle of the razor wire - totally oblivious to the danger surrounding it. It had probably been up and over the fence many other times and it became complacent, desensitized to the danger, and overconfident.

But at some point it either lost its footing or miscalculated something, got its tail caught in the razor wire, and fell - suspended in mid-air by the tail. What a wake-up call, but it was too late. It “hung out” for a while before it died.

Soon flies were in its ears and eyes. One afternoon a large buzzard landed on the fence and ate the brain out of the head of the opossum. It was summer and the sun was beating down on it. It started to bloat and smell. Down wind you could smell it all the way across the yard. The walkers and runners down below started to make the turn in that corner of the fence early to avoid the smell, but after a few days the smell became so rank they would avoid that end of the yard.

Do you ever act like the opossum walking through the roll of razor wire, courting danger, or being so self-assured you can’t see danger all around you? Are you still getting high, thinking your tail will never get caught in the razor wire? Are you still planning new crimes, smarter ways to get away with things (have younger hommies do the crime for you this time)?

Or are you already dead, for all intents and purposes? Are your “friends” in your ears deafening you and your eyes blinding you? Are you allowing others to do your thinking for you:? picking your brain apart with negative thinking and blaming others? Are your actions stinking down wind? Take a lesson from the opossum.



7. PAROLE: AUGUST A1V0 PAROLE RELEASE STATISTICS; A1VO RELEASES BY PRISON; REPORTS ON PAROLE BOARD RESULTS FROM MID-ORANGE, WOODBOURNE, WYOMING; MAKEUP OF THE PAROLE BOARD; ITEMS FROM THE SUMMER EDITION OF THE BOARD OF PAROLE’S NEWSLETTER

August A1 Violent Felon Parole Release Summary – unofficial research from parole database

97 interviews of which 13 were initial appearances and 84 were reappearances.
19 people (two females) ) were granted parole, all were reappearances.

The 19 August A1VO parole releases by prison

Beacon (female) - 18-Life for Murder 2 on 2nd board
Bedford Hills - (female) 15-Life for Murder 2 on 5th board
Clinton - 15-Life for Murder 2 on 9th board
Fishkill - 20-Life for Murder 2 on 4th board
Fishkill - 25-Life for Murder 2 on 2nd board
Groveland - 15-Life for Murder 2 on 6th board
Mid Orange - 26?- Life for Murder 2 on 2nd board
Mid Orange - 17-Life for Murder 2 on 3rd board
Mid Orange - 22-Life for Murder 2 on 3rd board
Mid Orange - 15-Life for Murder 2 on 8th board
Mid Orange - 15-Life for Murder 2 on 5th board
Mid Orange -15? - Life for Murder 2 on 4th board
Midstate - 25-Life for Murder 2 on 4th board
Orleans - 15-Life for Murder 2 on 4th board
Otisville - 21-Life for Murder 2 on 3rd board
Otisville - 20-Life for Murder 2 on 3rd or 4th board
Otisville - 15-Life for Murder 2 on 2nd board
Otisville - 18-Life for Murder 2 on 6th board
Southport - 20-Life for Murder 2 on 6th board

Release Reports from Inside:

MID-ORANGE
August - Loomis and Hernandez
4 out of 7 people with Outside Clearance made the board, all were Lifers.
For most it was their 3rd board

September - Loomis, Thompson, Greenan
2 postponements
2 released ( one 18-Life, on first board, one A1VO, with one year til C.R. date)
18 denied.

WOODBOURNE
September - Casey, Ross, &?
14 appearances, 1 granted parole (manslaughter)
5 A-1 VOs; 4 denied, 1 postponed

WYOMING
August - Kevin Ludlow, Chris Ortloff, William Casey
24 saw the board; 2 were granted parole
13 were initial interviews; none were granted parole
5 were reappearances; 1 was granted parole
6 were merit boards; 1 was granted

September - James Ferguson, Henry Lemons, Michael Hagler
35 saw the board; 5 were granted parole
18 were initial interviews; 1 was granted parole
8 were reappearances; 2 were granted parole
9 were merit boards; 2 were granted parole


NYS BOARD OF PAROLE COMPOSITION AND BREAKDOWN
Sources: NYLJ, Building Bridges, and the Deuce Club

Number of positions: 19, Number filled: 18
Pataki Appointees: 11, Spitzer Appointees: 5, Paterson Appointees: 2

Former Law Enforcement (police, sheriffs, investigators): 6
Former Parole or Probation employees: 3
Former Prosecutors: 2
Former Victim Advocates: 2
Former Attorneys: 2
Former Social Worker: 1
Former State Assemblyman: 1
Former Dep’y Commissioner, Liquor Authority: 1



FROM THE BOARD OF PAROLE’S SUMMER EDITION OF THEIR NEWSLETTER

ARTICLES :Parolee Look Up, New Board Members, Parole’s Partners, New Staff, Re-Entry Update, Parole Week 2008 , In The Community, Parole Week Photo Collage. National Trends, Parolee Success

PAROLE MISSION STATEMENT:
Our Mission: To promote public safety by preparing inmates for release and supervising parolees to the successful completion of their sentence.


and from the last article:

ROCHESTER PAROLEE SUCCEEDS

In 1975, John Hemmers was convicted for his role in a Manhattan murder-for-hire slaying of 46-year old George Hodge. He was sentenced to 20 years to life and released to parole supervision in 1994. While in prison, Mr. Hemmers hit the books and earned his GED and bachelor’s degree knowing that if he were ever to leave prison that he would need an education to ease his transition back into civilian life. He also worked hard on helping others, conducting peer counseling sessions. He was recognized as an effective instructor and a role model to other inmates. Additionally, Mr. Hemmers served as a substance abuse program counseling aide and conducted parenting programs for fellow inmates. Hemmers was paroled to Rochester, initially residing in the Corpus Christi Roger’s House halfway house while completing required substance abuse programming. He was also a regular participant in AA. At first, Mr. Hemmers was employed in the house restaurant and eventually began working as a residential counselor at Freedom House, a program for recovering substance abusers. In 1999, Mr. Hemmers moved to the suburb of Penfield with girlfriend and her daughter. The couple married shortly thereafter. They moved to their present home in Fairport in 2002.

John Hemmers is a true success story, meeting all the required directives of parole. He has been granted numerous travel passes in and out of state to attend conferences related to his continuing employment in the substance abuse counseling field and no adverse
police contact has been made during his supervision period. Hemmers remains employed by the Catholic Family Center of Rochester as a therapist and manager. He continues to interact with parolees at his workplace, and is considered to be a valuable employee.

HAVE A STORY TO SHARE?
The Parole Report is always looking for items of interest to people at the Division.
We are interested in innovative re-entry programs, community activities and other special stories. We especially love digital photos. Give us a call or send an email, media relations is happy to hear from you! Office of Media Relations: 518-486-4631, Heather Groll: hgroll@parole.state.ny.us
Carole Weaver: cweaver@parole.state.ny.us



8. PRISON MEDIA: THE MOVIE, A HARD STRAIGHT; RADIO INTERVIEW WITH THE WIFE OF A LAWYER WHO CLAIMS HIS CONVICTION WAS A SETUP; AND JOSEPH “JAZZ” HAYDEN’S NEW WEEKLY TV SERIES.

MOVIES The Reel Reentry Film Series has been rescheduled for Tuesday, November 18 from 5:00pm to 7:30pm, when Reel Reentry will feature the documentary, A Hard Straight, directed by Goro Toshima.  The film provides a glimpse into the reentry experiences of three formerly incarcerated individuals as they strive to mend familial bonds, fulfill probation requirements, find gainful employment and position themselves to reenter successfully.  

RADIO The wife of a lawyer who has just started a sentence which he claims was a set up because of his successes in defending unpopular clients, will be interviewed on the Fancy Broccoli Show on Sunday, October 19. You’ll want to tune in again on November 2 for A SURPRISE guest.

“Fancy Broccoli” airs on WVKR, 91.3FM, Poughkeepsie NY on Sundays from 3 - 6 pm, Eastern Time, and streams online - go to www.WVKR.org and click on (or near) the word 'LISTEN'.
Visit archives www.fancybroccoli.org to find lots of other good interviews.
Write Fancy Broccoli Show, WVKR, Box 726, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, NY 12604-0726

TV "All Things Harlem" can be seen on on Manhattan Neighborhood Network's channel 34 on Thursdays at 7:30pm each week for the next 13 weeks. The program will be airing coverage of the important issues affecting the Harlem Community, i.e. politics, advocacy, health care, police community relations, and all the other issues that are not being covered by mainstream media. Producer Joseph "Jazz" Hayden can be reached at 201 West 138th St. Suite 1, New York, NY 10030, Office: 212-234-0596, Cell: 917-753-3771, Jhayden512@aol.com



9. REENTRY: IT BENEFITS EVERYONE, NOT JUST THE “CRIMINAL,” IF PEOPLE RETURNING TO OUR COMMUNITIES HAVE THE SKILLS, POST-RELEASE SUPPORT AND EMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE TO BECOME LAW-ABIDING, TAX-PAYING MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC.

Society should invest in ‘re-entry’ of parolees, By Gerald T. Balone

A little over a year ago, I walked out of Fishkill Correctional Facility, one of the 17 state prisons where I had been confined for 37 years for my involvement in a robbery in which three people were killed on the East Side of Buffalo.

That crime, in 1973, culminated a criminal career that began when I was 8 years old and ran away from a foster home — one of a series of foster homes, orphanages, detention centers, reform schools and, ultimately, jails and prisons where I spent the prime of my life.

Although I never thought I would see the outside of a prison wall, I took advantage of every educational opportunity afforded — many of which, unfortunately, are no longer available to inmates.

I earned five college degrees, including two master’s degrees, completed several apprenticeship programs and took virtually every counseling and self-help program available.

I came out of prison an entirely different person, with the goal of repaying society for the trust and confidence placed in me by the New York State Board of Parole.

With all the buzz about “re-entry,” or steps taken to transition ex-offenders back into society, I thought this would be an appropriate time to discuss my first year of freedom.

I was initially released to a halfway house operated by Cephas Buffalo, and spent my first 100 days living with other ex-offenders in South Buffalo. That was a godsend because it provided me with a gateway into a culture that, as you might imagine, bore little resemblance to the one I was removed from in 1973.

Unfortunately, my education and training have not yielded the employment prospects I had anticipated.

I recognize the reluctance of some employers to take on someone with my prior — and I stress prior — record, but I hope that in the next year I am able to better utilize the education that the taxpayers so generously provided me with, and the experiences gleaned from my decades behind bars, to help people through motivational speaking and other means.

Meanwhile, I am paying the bills through day-work labor — painting houses, cleaning garages and attics, etc. — and continuing to work on my reentry into civilized society.

Re-entry is, at its most basic level, a public safety measure. I understand the political reality of appearing “soft on crime,” but I would urge our elected representatives to view re-entry as an investment in their community.

Nearly everyone who is now in prison will someday be released. It benefits everyone, not just the “criminal,” if people returning to our communities have the skills, post-release support and employment assistance to become law-abiding, tax-paying members of the public.

Gerald T. Balone lives in Buffalo.



10. TRANSPORTATION TO PRISONS

From the Capital District:
NEST Prison Shuttle schedule: Trip to Utica (Midstate, Marcy, Mohawk, Oneida) on Sat, Oct 18 leaving Troy at 5 AM. Sullivan trip (Ulster, Eastern, Woodbourne, Sullivan) on Sat, Oct 25 leaving at 6:30 AM ($45 adults, $30 children). Reservations: Linda O'Malley 518- 273-5199.

Door to door, free rides are offered from Albany to prisons within 150 miles by a volunteer of FUUSA’s Justice Committee. Please contact us at 518 253-7533 if you need a ride.

Statewide:
DOCS Free Bus - to find out how to sign up, from NYC area: Deacon Mason on Tues. &
Fri., 212 961 4026 and from Albany: on Wed & Thurs., 518 485 9212; from Buffalo area: Rev. Roberson 716 532 0177, x4805; from Syracuse: Sister Patricia: 315 428 4258



11. VOTING - EVEN IF YOU’RE ON PAROLE YOU MAY BE ABLE TO VOTE.

According to Chairman of Parole George Alexander, it is the current policy of the Parole Board to grant Certificates of Relief from Disabilities to inmates at the time of their release. A certificate of relief from disabilities, among other things, restores the right to vote. So if you have one, we hope you took it to the Board of Elections and registered to vote, because the deadline for registering will be past by the time you read this. However it's not too soon to start preparing for the next election.

When someone is prison receives notice that they’ve been granted parole release, they should check with the Facility Parole Officer to see if the board granted a certificate of relief from disability. While it is policy to issue it at time of release, the Board does reserve the right to defer. Once out, their Field Parole Officer has the responsibility of submitting the application if they were released without a certificate. That process involves a line of approvals, from their PO to his/her supervisor, to the Area Supervisor, then to a Parole Board Commissioner. If the commissioner doesn’t approve the application, it goes to a second commissioner, and if that person also denies it, that’s the end of the line this time around. But if the second commissioner approves the application, making it a tie decision, it then has to go to a third commissioner who breaks the tie, either in favor or against. This is the reason to start now. It's a long process.  But in the end there’s a good chance of having the right to vote restored. Note: The certificate is temporary while on Parole and becomes permanent upon final discharge.

The two relevant sections of the law giving the Board such authority are printed below. You can read all of Article 23, sections 700, 701 and 703 here.

from Article 23 - DISCRETIONARY RELIEF FROM FORFEITURES AND DISABILITIES AUTOMATICALLY IMPOSED BY LAW
§ 700. Definitions and rules of construction. 1. As used in this article the following terms have the following meanings:
(a) "Eligible offender" shall mean a person who has been convicted of a crime or of an offense, but who has not been convicted more than once of a felony.

§ 703. Certificates of relief from disabilities issued by the board of parole. 1. The state board of parole shall have the power to issue a certificate of relief from disabilities to:
(a) any eligible offender who has been committed to an institution under the jurisdiction of the state department of correctional services. Such certificate may be issued by the board at the time the offender is released from such institution under the board's supervision or otherwise or at any time thereafter;



12. WHAT'S HAPPENING AROUND NEW YORK STATE
Buffalo:
Prisoners Are People Too is a justice advocacy program that meets monthly on selected Mondays in Buffalo at the Pratt-Willert Community Center, 422 Pratt Street from 6:30-8:30pm. Each meeting features a documentary film, related to some criminal justice or prison issue, and one or more guest speakers who address that issue.

The Projecting Law Project at the University at Buffalo School of Law has undertaken a year-long project that takes a small group of first year law students out to Attica Correctional Facility six times during their first year, to meet with lifers and long-termers. The students, as well as correctional officers, prisoners, prison administrators and civilian staff, are interviewed on videotape about their insights into the “criminal punishment system.” These students are producing a documentary film entitled, “Encountering Attica.” Some raw footage of this work in progress will be screened at the next meeting of Prisoners Are People Too. Guest speakers will include the project leader, Dr. Terri Miller, and several first year law students.

The next meeting of Prisoners Are People Too is scheduled for November 24. Film and guest speaker(s) TBA.

PRP2 programs are sponsored by The Circle of Supporters for Reformed Offenders and Friends of Baba Eng. For further information, contact Karima Amin at karima@prisonersarepeopletoo.org or 716-834-8438.

New York City:
New York Reentry Roundtable
Community Service Society Reentry Roundtable
Wed Oct 15, 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM, Community Service Society, 105 East 22nd Street New York, NY
Contact: Gabriel Torres-Rivera at grivera@cssny.org

Second Annual Citizens Awards
Citizens Against Recidivism, Thu Oct 30, 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM, Schomburg Cultural Center
515 Malcolm X (Lenox Avenue) New York, NY
Contact: Mika'il DeVeaux at mdeveaux@citizensinc.org

WMD: Poetry!
Join Ty Conscious and Lady Penumbra in celebrating the writings of those Behind the Wall: -poetry-essays-art, at WILD WEDNESDAYS, hosted by Viviana, Theatre Arts Building, 300 43rd St @ 8th Ave, heart of Times Square, 5th floor, last Wednesday of every month - upcoming: Oct 29 and Nov 26 6:00 to 9:30 PM
 
$5 donation requested – no one turned away. Since it is an open mic, you can bring your own writings, music, or other performance work. You will have approx. 5 minutes to do your thing. Your free speech is fiercely protected here!
 
For more information call 917.346.0969 Lady Penumbra and Ty Conscious, Prison Projects, PO Box 1784, NY NY 10035




Building Bridges is a joint effort of Prison Action Network and the FUUSA Justice Committee

We thank the Community Church of NY, Unitarian Universalist, for their support.