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Get Involved with CANY's Coalitions
The Correctional Association of New York (CANY) fights tirelessly for a more humane and effective criminal justice system, but they can't do it alone. Whether you've been incarcerated, know someone who has or just want to help, CANY needs your support.
One way to get involved is to join one of CANY's three coalitions:
- Coalition for Women Prisoners: This group advocates for the rights and unique needs of women in prison. For instance women may discover they are pregnant while in prison and need the proper care. This coalition works to make sure women have the accommodations they need to stay healthy during their prison sentence.
- Campaign for Alternatives to Isolated Confinement (CAIC): Over 80,000 prisoners are in solitary confinement across the country. Members of this group demand reform of the state's use of this punishment since it's inhumane and psychologically damaging.
- Juvenile Justice Coalition: Did you know that New York is one of two states in the country that tried 16 and 17-year-olds as adults? The youth criminal justice system does more damage than good. This group advocates for these teenagers who are being treated inhumanely and unfairly.
CANY's Programs for Women and Youth
In addition to fighting for institutional reform, CANY works directly with people affected by the criminal justice system through their two advocacy programs:
- ReConnect: This program is for women who have recently been released from jail or prison. Run by CANY's Women in Prison Project, this program gives formerly incarcerated women information about their rights and the encouragement to speak up for those rights as free women.
- Safe Passages: CANY's Juvenile Justice Project facilitates this program, which is for youth ages 15-21 who are interested in being active participants in the youth criminal justice system reform. Members of this group are a mix of both formerly incarcerated teens and teens who are just concerned about the broken system. However, all of them want to make a change and CANY helps them do that.
Learning More About CANY
The criminal justice system in America is broken and CANY exists to advocate for real change. In the following video, staff members talk about their mission and answer the question "what could the world look like if we put people before prisons?" This question relates to the damaging psychological and physical effects of long-term jail time can have on a person. Listen as former prisoners speak out about their personal experiences in the system and how CANY has helped them. In order to truly reform the system, it needs to be looked at from multiple angles with all affected populations in mind. CANY works to fix issues related to women, youth and LGBTQ prisoners as well as to decrease the use of solitary confinement, increase proper healthcare in prisons and analyze how the system affects families.