Grassroots Leadership Blog

Mental Health and Criminal Justice Coalition Visits Bexar County

On Wednesday May 11th, members of the Mental Health and Criminal Justice Coalition visited  San Antonio, TX to learn more about Bexar County’s jail diversion programs. Hosted by the Center for Health Care Services (CHCS), the group met with program administrators, law enforcement, healthcare professionals, and representatives from mental health and judicial services of Bexar County. Read more about Mental Health and Criminal Justice Coalition Visits Bexar County

Grassroots Leadership welcomes Criminal Justice Program Associate, Lewis Conway, Jr.!

Grassroots Leadership is pleased to welcome Lewis Conway, Jr. to our team as our Criminal Justice Program Associate for the summer 2016! Lewis will be supporting our local criminal justice work, including outreach and planning for our upcoming Texas Advocates for Justice organizing training in Austin. Read more about Grassroots Leadership welcomes Criminal Justice Program Associate, Lewis Conway, Jr.!

David Venturella, GEO spokesperson pushing Indiana detention center, is former top ICE official implicated in deportation quota scandal

Today's Chicago Tribune has a story about the fight in Gary, Indiana over a new immigrant detention center proposed by private prison corporation GEO Group.  The new for-profit prison is heavily opposed by local immigrant rights groups, Black Lives Matters protesters, and members of the faith community.   According to the Tribune: Read more about David Venturella, GEO spokesperson pushing Indiana detention center, is former top ICE official implicated in deportation quota scandal

Grassroots Leadership and Texas Advocates for Justice Welcome Jorge Renaud!

New TAJ Organizer!
New TAJ Organizer, Jorge Renaud

Jorge comes to Grassroots Leadership after a long journey, from prison to walking the halls of the Texas Lege as a policy analyst for the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition and as an organizer with the Center for Community Change. An occasional slam poet and a fulltime believer in the necessity of those most affected by policy to be at the forefront of change, Jorge now is devoted to assisting the incredible work of the individuals in the Texas Advocates for Justice as they chop away at the roots of incarceration.  Read more about Grassroots Leadership and Texas Advocates for Justice Welcome Jorge Renaud!

VICTORY! Austin becomes the first city in the South to pass a Fair Chance Hiring Ordinance!

Last Thursday night, organizing efforts by a powerful group of formerly incarcerated people and their allies made history by making Austin the first Fair Chance Hiring City in the South! Austin City Council voted 8-2 to pass a Fair Chance Hiring Ordinance — an anti-discrimination policy that moves the background check to the end of the hiring process for most private employers, allowing candidates to be considered based on their merits first, without the stigma of a conviction history. Read more about VICTORY! Austin becomes the first city in the South to pass a Fair Chance Hiring Ordinance!

ACTION ALERT: 3 things you can do to support Fair Chance Hiring in Austin this week!

This Thursday, Austin City Council will debate and vote on a Fair Chance Hiring Ordinance that will allow individuals with a conviction history to fairly compete for jobs, without the stigma of a criminal record. 

We need your help to send a strong message to councilmembers that you support a Fair Chance Hiring Ordinance that seeks to restore civil rights and combat institutional racism in our city! Here are 3 things you can do this week to join the fight: Read more about ACTION ALERT: 3 things you can do to support Fair Chance Hiring in Austin this week!

New Grassroots Leadership report reveals private prison corporations profiting from warehousing individuals with mental health issues

A new report released today by Grassroots Leadership details the strategic expansion by private prison corporations to fill profit gaps from efforts to reduce mass incarceration through an emerging Treatment Industrial Complex. Read more about New Grassroots Leadership report reveals private prison corporations profiting from warehousing individuals with mental health issues

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