© Transformative In-Prison Workgroup

Development and Accomplishments:

Since 2016, the TPW has grown from an experimental think-tank into a statewide unified front of practitioners, formerly incarcerated individuals, and movement leaders, advocating in one voice to shift policy, practice and culture in the California Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation (CDCR) and state legislature

Organizing & Coalition Building

  • Grows from nascent think tank to 36-member growing statewide coalition; 

  • Hosts Breaking Isolation and Building Collective Power: A Statewide Convening in Support of In-Prison Programs, with 60 leaders from 34 organizations;

  • Develops Leadership and Advocacy Committees.

Legislative Advocacy

  • Secures $4 million in ongoing funding for CBO in-prison programs (2018-2019);

  • Launches 2019-2020 budget campaign to advocate for $15 million in funding for CBO in-prison programs; 

  • Partners with lobbyists and policy experts from Re:store Justice and Initiate Justice;

  • Successfully advocates for introduction of budget change proposals in Senate and Assembly;

  • Partners with Assemblymember Jones-Sawyer’s office to support a budget change proposal of $15 million for CBO programs and to strengthen TPW advocacy strategy by calculating return on investment figures for CBO programs;

  • Partners with Senator Bradford’s office to support his budget change proposal of $15 million for CBO programs;

  • Meets with Governor Newsom’s Legislative Director, Anthony Williams, and Deputy Cabinet Secretary, Daniel Seeman, to gain support for trauma-informed CBO prison program funding;

  • Holds meetings with Senator Nancy Skinner, Assemblymember Dr. Shirley Weber, Assemblymember Wendy Carrillo, and Senate and Assembly budget committee staff;

  • Provides regular testimony in Senate and Assembly hearings on public safety funding;

  • Educates public safety legislators and gained substantial support for 2019-2020 budget campaign while building traction for 1% Campaign.

  • Secures an additional $5 million in permanent state funding for community-based in-prison programs beginning in 2019.

CDCR Advocacy

  • Advocates to build a culture of healing and reduce the barriers that CBOs face in delivering prison programs, including ensuring that formerly incarcerated leaders are able to access facilities;

  • Organizes to stop CDCR from using racially biased research design, and advocates for communities to inform the design of upcoming evaluation of CBO-run programming.

  • Through regular meetings with high-ranking CDCR officials, establishes TPW coalition as key political and social force in California criminal justice reform movement.

Communications

  • TPW and Re:store Justice author Capitol News Weekly Op-Ed calling for investment in healing and a culture of rehabilitation;

  • Hosts messaging and advocacy training webinar for members.

Research

  • Partners with community researcher and criminal justice evaluator Angela Irvine to train coalition members on designing rigorous evaluations of TPW programs.

  • Partners with University of California Los Angeles to launch independent evaluation of TPW programs to provide accurate data on the transformative impacts of trauma-informed interventions in state prisons.