Criminal Justice Reform Resources

Listed below are resources for those intersted in learning more about prison ethics. Thank you to the folks who contacted us after the conference to share their organizations and projects and to help expand our resource list. Below you will find a list of organizations and campaigns, current events, facts and language, and publications.  Additions to this list can be sent to, with the words "Behind Bars resources" in the subject line.

 Current Events

Conference Speaker Mary Baxter was jobless, homeless, a convict, but now she's an award-winner. Read Mary's story.

Conference Speaker Mary Baxter, aka Isis Tha Savior, is also an award winning rapper.  Watch her music video for "ANXIETIES."

Senators Elizabeth Warren and Corey Booker discuss women in prison. Listen to their thoughts on incarcerated women.

Agnes Gund and the Art for Justice Fund Announce $22 Million in Grants to End Mass Incarceration. Read more about the three-pronged approach to end mass incarceration.

The Massachusetts State House voted on a criminal justice reform bill that included amendments dealing with witness intimidation, the threshold for felony larceny, solitary confinement and the expungement of records for young offenders. Read more from WBUR.

Private Prison Giant CoreCivic’s Wants to Corner the Mass Incarceration ‘Market’ in the States. Explore the ACLU's blog on private prisons.

Seventy percent of people in jail haven’t been convicted of a crime. They just can’t afford bail. Read on how America is waking up to the injustice of cash bail.

Why is getting people out of jail worthy of a bipartisan cause? The Sacramento Bee explores incarceration.

Rewire News on why keeping nonviolent pregnant women in jail through their due date because they're too poor to bond out defies "common sense, reason, and thoughtfulness."
Read more about pregnant women in prison.

A prosecutor in Philedelphia just set the national standard in the fight against mass incarceration. Read what District Attourney Larry Krasne has done in Philly.

 Organizations and Campaigns

Barriers Are Building Blocks for Incarcerated Women Although women comprise only about 10% of the overall imprisoned population in the United States, they represent the fastest growing population within jails and prisons.

Beyond the Wall focuses on the formerly incarcerated citizens who have successfully transitioned back into society.

Citizens For Juvenile Justice advocates for a fair and effective juvenile justice system in Massachusetts, designed to promote the healthy development of children and youth so they can grow up to live as responsible and productive adults in our communities.

Concerned Elders is a multi-ethnic, non-profit organization consisting of a group of seven professionals from various communities as well as fields of life, whom are touched by the personal stories of many individuals who are incarcerated.

#Cut50 works to cut crime and incarceration in all 50 states by translating local needs into smart safety solutions.

Data 4 Black Lives is a group of activists, organizers, and mathematicians committed to the mission of using data science to create concrete and measurable change in the lives of Black people.

The Jameel Poverty Action Lab's mission is to reduce poverty by ensuring that policy is informed by scientific evidence. They do this through research, policy outreach, and training.

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) sheds light on incarceration trends in America, racial disparities in incarceration, and other contributing factors. Read more on the effects of incarceration.

The Prisoners' Legal Services of Massachusetts (PLSMA) promotes the safe, humane and lawful treatment of Massachusetts prisoners through civil rights litigation, administrative advocacy, client counseling, and outreach to policy makers and the public.

The Prison Policy Initiative puts the problem of mass incarceration — and the perverse incentives that fuel it — on the national agenda. Get the big picture on mass incarceration. 

Prosecutor Impact is a not-for-profit organization built around the mission of improving community safety in the United States through a better understanding of the most important actor in the criminal justice system: the criminal prosecutor.

The Sentencing Project compiles state-level criminal justice data from a variety of sources. View and compare key state criminal justice data.

The Sylvia Rivera Law Project works to guarantee that all people are free to self-determine gender identity and expression, regardless of income or race, and without facing harassment, discrimination or violence.

The Right of Return is a fellowship for formerly incarcerated artists. The conference speaker Mary Baxter is a current fellow.

Fact and Language

Successful reintegration is not just a concern for those who return from prison: it is also a matter of public safety and economic necessity. Read twelve facts about incarceration and reentry.

The Marshall Project is focused on the best way to refer to people behind bars.

The Washington Times addressed the Justice Deparment changing their language.



Psychiatric Services in Correctional Facilities, American Psychriatric Association

Just Mercy, Bryan Stevenson

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, Michelle Alexander

From the War on Poverty to the War on Crime: the Making of Mass Incarceration in America, Elizabeth Hinton

Cuz: The Life and Times of Michael A., Danielle Allen

Orange is the New Black, Piper Kerman

Voices from American Prisons: Faith, Education, and Healing, Kaia Stern

Last Days of Solitary, PBS