(NEW YORK, NY) -- This Thursday, April 8, Calling All Crows, with the MultiFaith Initiative to End Mass Incarceration, will present the 5th Unlocked Voices livestream fundraising event, 7:30pm EST in New York City. The event, hosted by Chadwick Stokes (Dispatch, State Radio) and Lena Charity-Shapira (Calling All Crows), will feature performances by Lizzie No, Another Michael, Renee Goust, Raye Zaragoza, and Ajax Caravan with special guest actor/activist Gbenga Akinnagbe (‘The Wire/’The Deuce’). Plus appearances by Donna Hylton (A Little Piece Of Light), Roslyn Smith (Beyond Incarceration). Proceeds from the night will benefit the Women’s Prison Association + A Little Piece Of Light.
Watch via Calling All Crows Facebook Live, free with suggested donation.
Unlocked Voices was launched in 2020 by Calling All Crows with the Multifaith Initiative To ENd Mass Incarceration, staging livestream events in Nashville, Boston, Dallas & Charlotte. The events, featuring 21 artists (including Julien Baker, Maddie Medley, Anjimile), a wide array of speakers, and 7 local partners, raised over $25k and captured the stories from people directly affected by the mass incarceration problem here in the United States.
Regarding the work the Multifaith Initiative To End Mass Incarceration and Calling All Crows are doing with Unlocked Voices, Harlem born-and-raised, community leader and activist, John Duckworth stated, "The work of EMI is designed to speak and push for change in our society and legal system that will impact the lives of millions. This work uplifts the voices and injustice experienced by those who have lived experience, families, children, and yes, even victims, all who have been impacted by mass incarceration. However, for me this work is personal. The pains of imprisonment along with the never-ending stigma imposed long beyond the years of incarceration leave me no other alternative but to do this work that I call ‘the work of the Kingdom’.”
Discussing taking part in the event, Raye Zaragoza added, “I grew up in New York and love the energy, people and city so much. I’m proud to play in this show that’s honoring, supporting, and centering our incarcerated sisters and working toward the day when all of us are cared for, not caged.”
The Women’s Prison Association is the nation's first organization for women impacted by incarceration. New York City spends a staggering $1.4 billion per year on corrections. WPA’s alternative to incarceration program, JusticeHome allows women to avoid prison or jail. Instead they address the challenges that led to their arrest in the community. It costs more than $120,000 a year to send a woman to jail and her children to foster care. It costs less than $20,000 a year to offer her an alternative to incarceration with WPA.
A Little Piece of Light seeks to empower and facilitate healing for women, girls, and gender-fluid individuals who are directly impacted by trauma and involvement in the criminal justice system. Led by formerly incarcerated and family members of incarcerated individuals, ALPOL mobilizes those that share their collective trauma incited by sexism, racism, violence, poverty, and the criminal justice system. ALPOL offers safe spaces and delivers appropriately informed, evidence-based programs to individuals seeking to develop their own life skills, healing strategies, and personal agency. ALPOL facilitates an explorative journey in which participants overcome their lived experience of successive trauma and its cumulative, debilitating effects.ALPOL empowers its base to end the cycle of systemic trauma the criminal justice system perpetuates.
Along with these live events, Unlocked Voices looks to amplify the stories of people, especially womxn, impacted by incarceration, while acting in partnership with existing movement leaders and community organizations. Through the 8-part concert series Unlocked Voices looks to educate and grow new supporters, to drive action and celebrate the movement.
For additional information on Unlocked Voices, click here.
About The Organizations:
Calling All Crows is a national nonprofit based in Boston, Massachusetts that partners with musicians and fans to create change for women through service and activism. Founded by musician Chadwick Stokes and former tour manager Sybil Gallagher, the organization builds campaigns with issue-based local organizations to add capacity and momentum to their work through the platforms, community, and creativity that the music industry provides.
The MultiFaith Initiative to End Mass Incarceration (EMI), made up of the Ebenezer Baptist Church, The Temple, Auburn Seminary and other interfaith partners are collaborating on a national initiative to leverage spiritual power, people power and faith community resources to end mass incarceration in the United States. EMI is focused on catalyzing a faith-rooted response to the issue in a way that adds value to existing work and furthers coherence in faith-rooted efforts. Our vision is for multifaith communities to exercise and amplify their calls for eliminating mass incarceration in a dedicated, savvy, and impactful manner.