Rock2Reclaim Takes On Wrongful Incarceration And Its Impact On The Women Left Behind

Rock2Reclaim Takes On Wrongful Incarceration And Its Impact On The Women Left Behind

Rock2Reclaim works to address the harmful impact the carceral system has on individuals and their families. In solidarity and partnership, BLACK ENTERPRISE supports the organization‘s upcoming initiative, Through the Eyes of a Woman: From Emancipation to Reclamation, a panel series that centers criminal justice advocates and community leaders as they discuss several topics surrounding the judicial system. The event takes place on Sunday, June 25, at the Brooklyn Museum in New York City and kick off at 1:00 PM with opening remarks that honor Kenneth P. Thompson, the first Black district attorney of Brooklyn.

Speakers—including Rebecca Brown from the Innocence Project—will take the stage to discuss the criminal justice system, and will be followed by a series of panels with special guests Kiki Dunston of Hudson Link for Higher Education in Prison, Gwen Carr, the mother of Eric Garner and founder of the E.R.I.C. Initiative Foundation, and more.

The first panel, titled “What You Need to Know,” will involve advocates Angela Richardson-Black, Jo-Ann Santana, and Aisha Salaam as they discuss their journeys as activists and share their challenges. All three women are sisters to members of the Exonerated Five, the infamous group of young men who were wrongfully-incarcerated for sexual assault, and served between five and 12 years in prison before being freed. 

Richardson-Black, the sister of Exonerated Five’s Kevin Richardson, worked tirelessly with the families of the other jailed boys to fight to overturn their wrongful convictions. After their release, she founded the Exonerated Central Park Five Organization and now works as a licensed real estate agent. Salaam, whose brother is Yusuf Salaam, was motivated to advocacy work following her brother’s unjust conviction. She and her family have dedicated 30 years to helping families like theirs, fighting for those wrongfully convicted. Santana is the sister of Raymond Santana. As a victim of domestic violence, she credits God as the reason for her survival. Following undergraduate school, where she studied theology, Sanatana practices her ministry by serving her community through food pantry outreach.

The second panel, moderated by Carr, will include youth advocates Daichoi Dunston, Adedoyin Abimbola, and Aaliyah Salaam, discussing ways to bring young people one step closer to safety. Sharon Content, the founder and CEO of Children of Promise, will moderate the third and final panel featuring Kiki Dunston, Lisette Bamenga, and Natasha White. These women, who all work to provide an easier transition for formerly-incarcerated individuals, will discuss life after imprisonment. Event sponsors include AYR Wellness; Harlem Community Development Corporation; Sigma Gamma RhoHudson Link For Higher Education In Prison and Justice For The Wrongfully Incarcerated.

This Rock2Reclaim initiative is a community-based event that we all should be invested in. Follow Rock2Reclaim on Instagram to find out more about the organization and stay in the loop for current news.

This event is open to the public. Register here

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