Anaiah Jamyla'

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I Spent 17.5 Years In Prison For A Crime I Did Not Commit

I spent 17 ½ years in prison for a crime that I did not commit -- and I faced the death penalty twice for that crime. Following my conviction I was sentenced to 32 years to life, and I fought this case for a total of 23 years before my conviction was reversed and I was finally released. Despite the …

America's Prisons: A Road to Nowhere

By Ben Notterman<p>Video of Henry McCollum's release shows the exonerated death row inmate making his way through a crowd of excited onlookers and into his family's car, where he could not figure out how to fasten his seatbelt. In his defense, many states did not begin mandating the use of seatbelts …

403 Permission Denied

Restore Pell Grants for Prisoners

Last month the Department of Education clarified the eligibility rules for Federal Pell Grant funding. Although Congress barred Pell Grants in 1994 for those confined in "Federal or State Penal institutions," according to the clarification, these are distinct from "juvenile justice facilities" and …

California's Former Prisoners Often Don't Know They Can Vote, Study Finds

With severe overcrowding, abuse allegations and controversial sentencing laws, California’s prison system is a knotty political topic that often appears on the ballot. But according to a new study, many former inmates don't know they can vote in elections.<p>A report released Thursday by the …

Right To Vote

From Prison to Programming: Meet Africa's Most Caring Convicts

Only where failure is forgiven can creativity and innovation flourish. Cities everywhere are scrambling to foster Silicon Valley's fertile culture where those who start and stumble can start again. But what of those who have failed even before they start?<p>This was the quandary faced by eight South …

Do the Crime, Get a Degree. Should Prisons Offer College Courses to Convicted Felons?

This past Saturday, 53 inmates at Eastern Correctional Facility, a maximum-security prison in upstate New York, were awarded college diplomas as part …

'Prison to college' programme builds brighter futures

Revolutionary university programme aims to change prospects of ex-prisoners and public attitude to their rehabilitation.<p>A revolutionary university programme hopes to change prospects for former prisoners and public attitudes to their rehabilitation.<p>We are in a university English class watching a …

Armed Robbery

This Bus Offers Prison Families a Free Ride and Farm Food

Inspired by the work of imprisoned former Black Panther Herman Bell, the Victory Bus Project provides transportation—and farm-fresh produce—for the families of incarcerated New Yorkers.<p>Home to more than 50 correctional institutions and about 77,000 prisoners, New York is no stranger to …

Report: Prisoners Less Likely To Reoffend After Education Behind Bars

Prisoners who obtain some form of education while behind bars are less likely to return to crime and more likely to gain employment once they are …

How Former Prisoners Are Set Up to Fail, Especially if They're Women

Orange Is the New Black has shined a light on women's experiences behind bars, but what happens when they're no longer locked up?<p>Tiffany Johnson felt excited, scared, and a little incredulous on the day she was released from Central California Women's Facility, the largest women's prison in the …

How This Group Home Is Changing Former Prisoners' Lives

A New Way of Life (ANWOL) in the Watts neighborhood of Los Angeles offers female prisoners a place to stay as well as case management, food, and assistance finding work after they're released. These photos were taken in June 2014.<p>A New Way of Life (ANWOL) in the Watts neighborhood of Los Angeles …

Former inmate helps others re-enter society

CINCINNATI — Dominic Duren remembers Oct. 28, 2008, as the scariest day of his life, more frightening than the day he received a 12-year prison sentence as a convicted felon.<p>That October morning he walked out of Allen Correctional Institution in Lima and into an uncertain future. His girlfriend …

Should a Criminal Record Be a Life Sentence to Poverty?

<i>This article originally appeared at TalkPoverty.org.</i><p>At a time of historic polarization in Washington, one issue has garnered strong bipartisan …

High Hurdle to College for Ex-Offenders

<i>Ronald Day, who spent 15 years in state prison, was recently appointed Associate Vice President of the Fortune Society. (Mark Abramson/The Chronicle of Higher Education)</i><p><i>By Robert Lewis: Reporter, WNYC News</i><p>After years in and out of jail, Thomas Onaje Benjamin turned his life around, earning multiple …

Criminal Injustice: 5 Disturbing Facts About Women of Color and the Prison Industrial Complex

A quick glimpse at crime statistics will tell us that self-defense is a crime for women across ethnic and racial backgrounds.<p>90% of women in prison …

Out of Prison, Not Yet Home

When I got out of prison after six years, I was transferred to a halfway house that was, in some ways, worse than actually being behind bars.<p><i>After years of mandatory drug sentences and other tough-on-crime policies, the United States now imprisons more people per capita than any other country</i> …

How These Former Inmates Are Fighting For Prison Reform

Yusef “Bunchy” Shakur, Shaka Senghor and Chris Wilson are activists, community leaders and businessmen. They are also among the formerly incarcerated.<p>The three are speaking out about their journey from prison to prosperity and why the American justice system needs to move away from mass …

Are Overcrowded Prisons Unconstitutional? It’s Time for the Supreme Court to Weigh In.

The ongoing effort to address America’s mass incarceration problem has thus far focused on lawmaking. There are bills working their way through …

Facebook Is Making It Harder for Prisons to Censor Inmates

A new policy means that prisoners can share their stories with the internet.<p>Facebook has been suspending the accounts of prison inmates with active profiles at the behest of the South Carolina Department of Corrections (SCDC) for years, often with little reasoning other than prison officials asking …

Prisoners forced off methadone less likely to return to treatment

(Reuters Health) - When people on methadone maintenance therapy are incarcerated, many are forced to stop taking it, and are less likely to restart methadone treatment on their release, according to a new study.<p>A Nepalese drug addict smokes a cigarette at the Saarathi Nepal after having his daily …

Mississippi cuts its prison work program. Nothing makes sense anymore.

Nothing makes sense anymore. Mississippi's Department of Corrections has decided that it is going to cut its prison work program, saying that it will …

From Solitary To The Streets: Released Inmates Get Little Help

In prison, Brian Nelson lived in solitary confinement. That meant 23 hours a day in a small cell. No human contact, except with guards — for 12 years straight.<p>Then, his prison sentence for murder was over. One moment he was locked down. The next, he was free.<p>NPR and The Marshall Project, an online …

New York City Council Passes 'Ban The Box' Bill Restricting Use Of Criminal Records In Hiring

NEW YORK -- Carl Stubbs, 63, stood outside New York City Council chambers Wednesday in anticipation of the council’s vote on the Fair Chance Act -- a bill that would delay when many of the city’s private sector employers can ask job applicants about their criminal history.<p>“I feel [that] being …

New York City Council

Life After Jail: Experts Tell Us What The 'OITNB' Ladies Would Have To Deal With IRL

Throughout the first and second seasons of "Orange is the New Black," a small handful of characters -- some minor, some Alex Vause -- were released …

Here's How It Feels To Lose Obama's Get-Out-Of-Prison Lottery

"My folks are devastated," said one inmate. "I ain't even gonna call and tell them."<p>WASHINGTON -- A few dozen federal inmates, all of them nonviolent drug offenders, surely celebrated this week when President Barack Obama announced he was granting them their freedom. But for those who applied for …