The Sylvia Rivera Law Project holds a strong belief that the people most affected by the systems of violence and oppression we fight are the best people to lead that fight. We also believe that social justice organizations must find ways to directly involve the members of our community who have been separated from us by the criminal injustice systems. The Prisoner Advisory Committee (PAC) is one way to overcome the enormous state-created barriers to communication and political participation for the people who are most affected by the prison system. PAC currently has around 70 amazing members who are enthusiastic about sharing their time, passion, and expertise with SRLP. Our members are trans, intersex, gender non-conforming people and allies who are currently incarcerated. Members of PAC work together with members of our collective to develop plans of work. Already, PAC members have helped with a national position statement on transgender healthcare in correctional settings and provided comments to the National Prison Rape Elimination Commission. They are developing creative ways to work on changing policies, building community and sharing information and strategies.
In Solidarity is a collaborative newsletter created by PAC members, who are involuntarily locked away, SRLP staff & volunteers. Together our words & collective efforts work against injustice for low-income and/or people of color who are trans, intersex & gender non-conforming both inside and out of the prison industrial complex and towards gender self determination for all. Learn more here.
We believe that storytelling is a revolutionary act and we have created our blog to share the stories of our PAC members with no censorship or editing (excluding minor name changes to keep identities confidential, where necessary).
The experiences of incarcerated transgender, intersex and gender non-conforming people make one point very clear: prisons are not supposed to be a place where we survive. SRLP’s Prisoner Advisory Committee (PAC) is a tool for community building within the prison system. A tool to ensure that our people survive on the inside and their stories are shared on the outside. See posts from the blog below, or visit the main blog page here!
News about PAC and blog posts from PAC members
- Shakespeare as a controversial force of good behind bars (4/18/2014)
- Read some empowering, trans poetry sent to us from prison! (4/11/2014)
- What does SRLP mean to its incarcerated members? Read on to find out! (4/3/2014)
- A max-security prison in NY lives up to its (bad) reputation, says PAC (3/24/2014)
- Songwriting behind bars – PAC member Jakaelynn shares her talent! (3/17/2014)
- Failures of the criminal punishment system from a prisoner’s perspective (2/11/2014)
- Prison officials stop at nothing to separate lovers in PAC (1/29/2014)
- Prison is unsafe for LGBT people – Testimony from a PAC Member (1/27/2014)
- Overcoming a life of hardship – One PAC Member’s story (1/21/2014)
- Who you’ll meet in prison, according to a PAC member (1/17/2014)