Currently & formerly incarcerated survivors have stated again and again how important letters of support are to their well-being. Letters are also important strategies to build relationships and organizing coalitions across prison walls. Here’s a basic guide for how to send letters to incarcerated people. This document is adapted from a prisoner letter-writing guide created by the California Coalition for Women Prisoners. Thank you CCWP!
Goals of letter-writing to incarcerated survivors:
Strengthen our connection to criminalized survivors and collectively resist their disappearance;
Strengthen and guide the anti-violence movement by gathering and sharing information on how survival is criminalized;
Respect and promote the leadership of incarcerated survivors by responding to requests for information and by asking for their input in all matters of their survival and release;
Connect incarcerated survivors with information, resources and support;
Monitor and resist abusive prison conditions;
Inform us of upcoming release possibilities for incarcerated survivors, including parole hearings and commutation processes, so that we can advocate with survivors for their release;
Resist the isolation that incarceration of all forms creates, paying particular attention to how incarcerated women and transgender people disproportionately suffer the loss of outside support systems;
Express our solidarity with incarcerated survivors.
For more about writing letters to incarcerated people, please visit Survived and Punished