Please join us in welcoming Roslyn Smith to the V-Day team. As Program Manager, Roz will oversee V-Day’s new Beyond Incarceration project which will further expand and deepen V-Day’s ongoing work with formerly incarcerated women and incarcerated women, engaging and educating activists throughout the US and worldwide in a dialogue around restorative justice.
Roz brings her personal experience from long-term incarceration as a vehicle for her work as a criminal justice reform advocate. “As I think about both the roots of my involvement in violence and the issue of responsibility, I know that increasingly it is understood that people who cause harm have often been victims themselves of violence. I also read more and more about the recognition that prisons are mainly sites of punishment, not places designed to help people grow and find self-worth, develop the capacity to redirect their lives, and to confirm their humanity,” said Roslyn.
Roslyn obtained her Bachelor’s degree while incarcerated and created curriculum and taught parenting classes for and with other mothers in prison. In addition, she worked with Puppies Behind Bars, a non-profit organization that trains incarcerated people to raise service dogs for veterans and first responders. She initiated the blog series for V-Day’s 2019 Spotlight on Women in Prison, Detention Centers, and Formerly Incarcerated Women.
A featured speaker in both academic and business settings, she has collaborated with the Osborne Association, Columbia University, the Brooklyn District Attorney Reentry Program and various other criminal justice reform groups. Roz was featured in the award-winning PBS film, “What I Want My Words To Do To You” that documents the writing workshop at Bedford Hills Correctional Facility for women, conducted and led by Eve Ensler. Since her release after serving 39 years, she has devoted her time between her daughter and her advocacy work.
Roz, we could not be more excited to have you joining the amazing V-team! We are honored and grateful to you for bringing your voice and vision to our shared work.
DISPATCHES FROM BEYOND INCARCERATION BLOG LAUNCHES
Today, we also announce Roz’ newly expanded blog, Dispatches from Beyond Incarceration, where Roz will write an ongoing series about her experiences as a formerly incarcerated women, including short and long dispatches on prison reform and prison abolition, often highlighting news articles around the experiences of incarcerated and formerly incarcerated women, pieces highlighting what she’s thinking about, what she’s worried about, including interviews with formerly incarcerated women, stories from prison, visions of a world without prison, how violence against women leads to women coming to prison and then the violence they experience there, all the while highlighting important data and facts that shed light on incarceration and our commitment to restorative justice models.
You will hear from women whose lives have been profoundly impacted by the prison and detention system on issues as far ranging as: trauma and abuse; shackling; transgender experiences; dignity; health and mental health; experiences of long term inmates; the youth/school to prison pipeline; the experiences of mothers and children navigating the immigration system; higher education in prison; and reentry and technology.
READ the first pieces –