Conversation on Race and Criminal Justice

En Espanol

Reparations Now!

Thursday, October 23, 6:00-8:00 p.m.
Hayti Heritage Center
804 Old Fayetteville Street, Durham

prison_graphic

This forum was the second in a series of conversations to address the impact of “250 years of slavery; 90 years of Jim Crow; 60 years of separate but equal; 35 years of state-sanctioned redlining” as described by Ta-Nehisi Coates in his acclaimed contribution, “The Case For Reparations” printed in the June 2014 issue of The Atlantic.

Speakers
Larry Hall
N.C. House of Representatives

Sandra Velez
Founding Director, Bridges/Puentes prison ministry

Artemesia Stanberry
Associate Professor, Political Science
North Carolina Central University (NCCU)
Moderator

State Representative Larry Hall talked about legislation passed and needed to address racial disparities in criminal cases. Sandra Velez provided an eye-witness report of incarceration and its impact on families.

This event was free and open to the general public. Refreshments catered by Blue Coffee Café. For more information contact Rita Gonzalez csltpnc@yahoo.com (Spanish/English) or 919-949-6352.

Conversaciones de Raza y Justicia Penal

Indemnizaciones Ahora!

Jueves, 23 de octubre, 6:00pm – 8:00pm
Hayti Heritage Center, 804 Fayetteville Street, Durham, NC

prison_graphic

Este foro es el segundo de una serie de conversaciones dirigidas sobre el impacto de “250 anos de esclavitud; 90 anos de Jim Crow; 60 anos de separacion pero igual; 35 anos cambiando lineas de distritos con sanciones estatales “Redlining” como describe Ta-Nehisi Coates en su articulo de gran contribucion y reconocida “The Case For Reparations” publicado en junio del 2014 revista The Atlantic.

Oradores Invitados
Larry Hall
Camara de Representantes – NC

Sandra Velez
Directora y Fundadora, Bridges/Puentes Reentry Prison Ministry

Artemesia Stanberry
Profesor Asociado, Siencia Politica
North Carolina Central University (NCCU)
Arbitrador

Representante Estatal Larry Hall hablara sobre legislacion aprobada y la necesidad de hablar sobre los puntos de disparidades en caso criminal.  Sandra Velez poveera testimonio de el impacto al las familias y encarcelamiento.

Este evento es gratis y abierto para el public general.  Refrescos por Blue Coffee Café. Para mas informacion: Rita Gonzalez csltpnc@yahoo.com (Espanol/Ingles) o 919-949-6352

Celebrating with Gwen Patton on her retirement from Trenholm Technical Community College on September 26, 2014.

L-R Emery Wright, Gwen Patton, Theresa El-Amin, Steph Guilloud

L-R Emery Wright, Gwen Patton, Theresa El-Amin, Steph Guilloud

That “peace of mind” is elusive

The following letter was written by SARN Board President Theresa El-Amin and published in the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer on September 4, 2014.  The letter was written in response to a piece written by senior reporter Chuck Williams (included at the end of this post).

That “peace of mind” is elusive

“Someone is stealing our peace of mind,” says Chuck Williams, senior editor at the Ledger-Enquirer. Chuck’s piece published on September 2 was more like a rallying cry that tells the tale of two cities.

I haven’t had “peace of mind” since I first saw young prisoners doing work that is done by public employees in all the other cities I’ve called home. I haven’t had peace of mind since I heard leaders in Columbus Consolidated Government describe the “tale of two cities” over and over again without a vision to address economic inequality.

Where there are thousands of poor children not succeeding in school, you will have criminal activity that doesn’t go away as long as you have thousands of poor children not succeeding in school. This is where friends in one of my circles would say, “Everybody knows that.”

I’ve moved around a few circles in Columbus enough to know that not everybody knows that children failing in school, a high poverty rate and criminal activity are connected.

Perhaps people really do know, and have decided “it’s somebody else’s problem.”

History has shown us that social problems are addressed by social movements that lead to changes in public policies. Otherwise, we live in fear. We fear people who don’t look like us, talk like us or live where we live.

Fear breeds oppression, repression and suppression. The outcome is a community culture of “them and us.”

Columbus needs a “collective piece of our minds.” That “Great Conversation” can’t start soon enough.

Theresa El-Amin

Columbus

Chuck Williams: Someone is stealing our peace of mind

by Chuck Williams
chwilliams@ledger-enquirer.com

We have a crime problem in Columbus, people.

That’s a fact that cannot be denied. Now, if only the solution was as easy to state as the obvious.

Ask your family, friends and neighbors if they have had an encounter with the criminal element of this community? You will be surprised by the answer.

In the last month I know four people who have been impacted.

• A good friend ran a Saturday afternoon errand, came back to her home in the Historic District and found it had been broken into and some items she deeply cherished were stolen. I was going to say taken, but they were stolen, just like her peace of mind.

• Another friend ran into his downtown business for a couple of minutes, forgot to lock his vehicle, and a thief reached into it and stole his bookbag. I was going to say took it, but it was stolen, just like his peace of mind.

• Friends of mine in Midtown left their home on a Tuesday morning, one of them circled back less than 30 minutes later to check on something. Their front door had been kicked in, and their TV and other electronic items were stolen. The back door of their neighbor’s home had been kicked in, as well. More stuff was stolen. I was going to say taken, but it was stolen, just like their peace of mind.

• Neighbors in Historic District were recently robbed at gunpoint of their jewelry as they stood in their front yard one night. Again, their peace of mind was stolen — and the damn fool did it by putting a gun in their face.

Four instances that I know about because they happened to people in my circle. That is a pretty rough August, isn’t it?

But here is the kicker, those thieves didn’t just steal from my friends and neighbors, they stole from me and you. They stole — and continue to steal — from our community. They stole our collective peace of mind. The guy who robbed my neighbors at gunpoint, just as well put the gun in my face. And I am not alone. I have seen the Facebook reaction to this incident. I have talked to my neighbors and friends.

The law abiding folks among us are angry and want to find a way to curb this, bring those who terrorize us — and this is a form of domestic terror — to swift justice.

The only good thing I see coming out of this is people coming together to combat it. They are using social media as a tool to communicate and inform. And there are neighborhoods and communities all over this town doing that.

But here is what this issue has also done — it has made me look at people and things differently. And that is unfortunate.

Sunday night I was walking the dogs and saw a man hanging out. He didn’t respond to me when I asked him a question. He didn’t even look at me. He was in an area that has seen a spike in crime. I called 911. My thought was simple, “Let the police sort it out.”

Three weeks ago, I would have never called 911 on that man. Never.

But that was before someone stole my peace of mind.

Chuck Williams, senior reporter, chwilliams@ledger-enquirer.com.

Conversation on Race and Reparations

reparations_durham_Aug2014

On August 7, 2014, SARN presented a Conversation on Race and Reparations in Durham, N.C. The event was 6:00-8:30 p.m. in the auditorium of the Durham County Main Public Library, 300 N. Roxboro St.

The speakers were:

William “Sandy” Darity, Samuel DuBois Cook Professor of Public Policy, African and African American Studies and Economics at Duke University; and Director, Duke Consortium on Social Equality

Kirsten Mullen, Folklorist and co-author with William Darity of The Big Payback

Larry Reni Thomas, International Organization for Compensation and Reparations for Victims of Wilmington Massacre of 1898, author of The Lady Who Shot Lee Morgan

Theresa El-Amin, SARN Regional Director

The perspective of “a transformation of society” in the injury areas of criminal justice, education, economic inequality, environment (including housing) and health care were explored.

Reparations Now!

On July 17, Akinyele Umoja will speak on the historical basis for the demand of reparations. The “Conversation on Race and Reparations” will take place in Columbus GA at the Columbus Public Library, 3000 Macon Road. Theresa El-Amin will serve as moderator.

Father’s Day Essay Contest

FatherChildrenStudents 8 to 12 and 13 to 18 years were invited to submit an essay on the topic: “What my father means to me.” The essays could be about a biological father, male relative, male coach or mentor who is special to the student.

Essays were be presented on Saturday, June 7, 2014 at Columbus Public Library, 3000 Macon Road, 1:00 – 3:00pm.

 

Cash prizes of $25, $15 or $10 were be given for 1st, 2nd and 3rd places respectively in both age groups.  Gift cards werel be given to the subject of the essay in the amount awarded students for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place.

Father’s Day Essay Contest sponsored by Southern Anti-Racism Network (SARN) www.projectsarn.org

For more information: fathersdayessay@aol.com or 762-821-1107

Father's Day photo

Father’s Day photo

Father's Day group photo

Father’s Day group photo

Mother’s Day Essay Contest

MotherChildStudents 8 to 12 and 13 to 18 years old were invited to submit an essay on the topic: “What my mother means to me.” The essays were 100 words or less.

Essays were presented on Saturday, May 3, 2014 at the Mildred Terry Library, 2:00 – 3:00pm.

Contestants read their essays on May 3rd and cash prizes of $25, $15 or $10 were given for 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes respectively in both age groups.

Other gifts were available for mothers of essay contestants to choose one.

mothers_day_photo2 mothers_day_photo2-2 mothers_day_photo1-7 mothers_day_photo1