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Day of Empathy #cut50 MARCH 25TH 2020

We envision a criminal justice system that recognizes the humanity of the 2.2 million people currently behind bars in America (and beyond) and moves toward compassion and treatment rather than punishment and incarceration. With empathyunderstanding, and love, we can build the political will needed to rectify the damage caused by the incarceration industry on individuals, families, and our society.

Join our online day of action hosted by organizers across North America on Wednesday, March 25, 2020. As people behind bars remain at a heightened risk of COVID-19 spread, it is especially important for us to rally for their safety, health, dignity, and freedom.


6 AM PT // 9 AM ET – North Carolina Day of Empathy

Get ready for a full 12 hour online day of empathy in North Carolina, beginning at 9am when courts usually open. The schedule provides 21 slots of varying time lengths that include 15 individual speaking slots for a variety of topics that relate to Empathy 4 NC, #cut50, The NC Second Chance Act, Health in prison populations, business, activism, etc – just to name a few examples.

There is also a 1 hour scheduled lunch break for organizers, speakers, activists, and audience members, during which we will play a video reel highlighting efforts across NC while speakers recoup, refuel, and prepare for the next part of the day, as well as an extra 30 minute video interlude similar to the lunch break. Additionally, there are two scheduled q&a’s and a roundtable discussion between organizers about moving forward, in the aims to motivate the populace to continue to be active in the Criminal Justice Reform Movement.

7 AM PT // 10 AM ET – Clean Slate Michigan panel discussion

A panel discussion of Michigan’s Clean Slate Package featuring speakers from Safe & Just Michigan and Nation Outside, including:

– John Cooper, Executive Director at Safe & Just Michigan
– Joshua B. Hoe, Policy Analyst at Safe & Just Michigan & producer of Decarceration Nation
– & more!

8:30 AM PT // 11:30 AM ET – Tennessee #Out4Good~Support Equals SUCCESS

We will have a moderator introduce a few notable guests that support this day. That includes people directly impacted, partners , programs and organizations. All sharing a word of how important “people” are. How important it is to support our brothers and sisters incarcerated and their walk after release. More importantly, we’ll hear the stories of why each speaker has taken the steps to do more than talk.

8:30 AM PT // 11:30 AM ET – Pregnancy in Prison: Standards of Care

A panel discussing Michigan Senate Bills 830 and 831 (Pregnancy in Prison Standards of Care and Advisory Oversight Committee for Huron Valley) including discussions with impacted people and people working on the legislation.

9 AM PT // 12 PM ET – Go Live & Take the Empathy Pledge

At 9 AM PT // 12 PM ET on Wednesday, March 25th, advocates across North America will go live on social media to take the Empathy Pledge in solidarity with our incarcerated community members – especially as they face a high risk of danger in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

9 AM PT // 12 PM ET – Restore Power to the People – Georgia

Restore Power To The People by restoring VOTING RIGHTS, providing HOUSING, eliminating SOLITARY CONFINEMENT, improving CONDITIONS OF CONFINEMENT, and providing DIGNITY OF JUSTICE-INVOLVED PEOPLE in Georgia.

9 AM PT // 12 PM ET – Empathy Behind Bars in Oklahoma

Millions of people are sitting behind bars, defenseless to the spread of the Coronavirus – a vulnerable population. What does medical look like behind bars? Directly impacted people will share personal stories of their experiences with medical help and lack thereof in prison. We will highlight what we can do to protect incarcerated people during this pandemic.

10 AM PT // 1 PM ET – Flip The Script Stories – Day of Empathy Live – Canada

Join us on the Day of Empathy 2020 as we bring impacted people and their families together with elected officials to share their stories. The Day of Empathy is an opportunity to shine light on people impacted by the criminal justice system in order to uplift and amplify their voices, and win over hearts and minds towards the idea that transformation is possible. If you or a loved one is system impacted (or if you’re a non-impacted ally!), join us for this year’s Day of Empathy.

10 AM PT // 1 PM ET – Michigan Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice

Members of the group Michigan Crime Survivors for Safety and Justice discuss the importance of empathy in our criminal justice system, featuring:

– Aswad Thomas, CSSJ Michigan
– Joshua B. Hoe, Policy Analyst at Safe & Just Michigan, producer of Decarceration Nation

10 AM PT // 1 PM ET – Navigating Through the Parole and Probation System Workshop

This workshop is designed to prepare families and their loved ones to meet with the Virginia Parole Board and Probation Officers for Parole and Probation Supervision.

Parole was abolished in 1995 in Virginia. HB 33 and SB 793 provide that a person is eligible to be considered for parole if (I) such person was sentenced by a jury prior to the date of the Supreme Court of Virginia decision in Fishback v. Commonwealth, 260 Va 104 (June 9, 2000), in which the Court held that a jury should be instructed on the fact that parole has been abolished, for a noncapital felony committed on or after the abolition of parole going into effect (on January 1, 1995). (ii) the person remained incarcerated for the offense on July 1, 2020…

Guest speakers: Edward Simms, Paul Taylor, Weldon Bunn, David Young, Ubaydah Baa’ith, and Bekura Waliah Shabazz Branch.

10 AM PT // 1 PM ET – Intersectional Approach to Empathy – Nebraska

Come join advocates and activists in Nebraska as we discuss the intersectional approach to empathy and the impact COVID-19 has on people who are incarcerated, returning home, living with HIV/AIDS and juvenile justice involved. We’ll be discussing topics like healthcare, staffing in overcrowded systems, and dispelling rumors during the pandemic and how we can get our officials to take action NOW through empathy.

10 AM PT // 1 PM ET – Illinois Day of Solidarity

Panel discussion featuring the following topics:
– Let’s discuss the millions of people locked in cages!
– Help protect the helpless from CoronaVirus!

A full twenty percent—8,000 people—of the IDOC population is elderly and many more are disabled, chronically ill, or medically fragile. This over 60 group is most vulnerable, reformed, least likely to offend (near zero) most costly ($70,000) annually of any group in prison.
Let’s press every state to take immediate action to protect these vulnerable populations.

12 PM PT // 3 PM ET – Day of Empathy Town Hall & East Coast 4 PM Count

It’s March 25th! Join the #cut50 team, Van Jones, Jessica Jackson, Martin Luther King III, and some of our exciting influencer friends as we celebrate the fourth annual Day of Empathy with our incredible organizers and supporters.

Join us for this digital rally in support of people who are incarcerated. Even amidst turbulent times, we can continue fighting for dignity, justice, and freedom to our community members who need it most.

12 PM PT // 3 PM ET – Michigan Task Force on Jail and Pretrial Incarceration

A panel discussion about the implementing legislation for the recommendations of the Michigan Joint Task Force on Jail and Pretrial Incarceration, featuring:

– Monica Jahner (ARRO)
– Chief Justice Bridget McCormack
– Joshua B. Hoe, Policy Analyst at Safe & Just Michigan and producer of Decarceration Nation

12 PM PT // 3 PM ET – Life Interrupted in Pennsylvania

Americans impacted by the criminal justice system nationwide will meet with lawmakers to share their stories and experiences. Philadelphia will join hundreds of individuals throughout the United States for this call to action. Come join us on Wednesday, March 25th from 3-6 pm as we share experiences and hear stories from individuals and families impacted by the criminal justice system. This year we will be discussing Dignity for incarcerated women and alternatives to incarceration (ATI) in diversionary programs. We’ll talk about the impact on keeping individuals out of prison and instead connected to programs that more “effectively and efficiently address behavioral health conditions that underly criminal behaviors.”

2 PM PT // 5 PM ET – Empathy InCorrections – Arizona

Empathy InCorrections is a podcast by an InCorrect Couple. Sue Ellen Allen was a prisoner and Douglas Reed was a prison guard. She’s an old short white lady, he’s a young tall black man. Different races, ages, cultures, educations, life experiences, work experiences. Their unlikely meeting (at a Van Jones event) has led to in-depth conversations about prison, relationships, and empathy as well as a deep and meaningful friendship. Big differences. Shared empathy.

Tune in to the InCorrect Couple and their guests on #cut50’s National Day of Empathy.

3 PM PT // 6 PM ET – California Online Day of Empathy

A discussion of three important California bills – presented by #cut50, Californians for Safety and Justice, and Young Women’s Freedom Center. We will also be joined by Assemblymember Reggie Jones Sawyer and Javier Stauring.