The Holidays Intersect with Mass Incarceration: Thinking About Those Behind the Razor Wire, by Jodie Lawston

21 Nov

The holidays are approaching, and while many people are getting ready to share meals, company, and time with family and friends, almost 2.5 million people are also locked behind prison walls without regular contact with their loved ones.  During a time in history when the holidays are becoming more and more synonymous with mass consumption, it’s sometimes helpful to think about the ways that we may be able to bring a smile to someone’s face in simple, yet very effective and meaningful, ways.

Prisoners often do not have contact with brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, daughters, sons, and friends.  While many incarcerated people have strong bonds and come together to celebrate holidays within the confines of prison walls, it still makes people’s day when they get some form of communication with the outside world.  A card, a short note, or even a small donation to programs like the Action Committee for Women in Prison’s Christmas Program  can make all the difference in an imprisoned person’s life.  This holiday season, think about writing to an incarcerated person to let her/him know that people on the outside are thinking about them, and that they are not forgotten.


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