StrongReturns.org, our effort to make prison reform the millennial generation’s issue in the 2016 elections, was featured in The Marshall Project, the new criminal justice journalism effort led by former New York Times editor Bill Keller:
Instead of spending their gap year zip-lining in Costa Rica or rail-passing across Europe, Scott Johnston and Pete Davis have decided to spend the year between their Harvard graduation and law school mobilizing students in support of prison reform. Using small grants from the Ford Foundation and other benefactors, the pair plans to visit ten campuses in the deep South to recruit “student ambassadors,” to stage events where former prisoners talk about the obstacles they faced returning to freedom, to create a Story-Corps-style bank of incarceration stories, and to build a “millennial prison reform agenda” for 2016. They held their first campus event last month at Georgetown University.
Here’s our StrongReturns.org strategy, as of now:
Millennials need to start sharing stories about the prison system and the prison reform movement. These stories start with authentic encounters with the prison system, are amplified through storytelling over campus networks, and can be weaved together into a Millennial Prison Reform Agenda worth pushing for in 2016. To help, we are launching a nationwide Millennial Prison Reform Network to connect young prison reform activists across the country.