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weekly update – february 22, 2019

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In this issue…

Join us 2/27 in Albany for a Lobby Day – Bail, Speedy Trial, Parole Reform

In CT: Mass Incarceration and Intersectionality

In California: Reframing the Narrative of Reentry

Join us 2/27 in Albany for a Lobby Day – Bail, Speedy Trial, Parole Reform



Join us in Albany Wednesday, February 27, at the Capitol for our Lobby Day on bail reform, and on our Less Is More Act to address technical violations of parole. If you want to join us contact Cedric Fultonat or at 518-965-6771.


 In CT: Mass Incarceration and Intersectionality


Community Organizer, Kenyatta Thompson, presenting to a group of Americorp VISTA members.


Last week, our Connecticut Community Organizer, Kenyatta M. Thompson, presented to a group of Americorp VISTA members. Her presentation covered aligning movement to end mass incarceration with other issue areas that intersect with and perpetuate mass incarceration and racial inequality. Kenyatta also discussed how Katal utilizes community organizing and harm reduction to achieve health, equity, and justice. 

After a brief introduction on the history and mission of Katal, Kenyatta launched into our Incarcerated Communities exercise. The goal of the exercise is to have each participant walk away with an understanding of how communities are impacted by incarceration, particularly communities targeted by the war on drugs. It was a stimulating and successful presentation, and we thank AmeriCorps for the opportunity to share our work.

For more information on how to get involved in our work in Connecticut, or to host a an Incarceration Community exercise, please contact Kenyatta Thompson at (860) 937-6094 or


In California: Reframing the Narrative of Reentry


Our Director of Research, Jarred Williams, alongside Gregory Sale, the curator of Future IDs project.


Last week on Alcatraz Island in the San Francisco Bay, an amazing project launched, highlighting the artwork of currently and formerly incarcerated people. Katal’s Director of Research, Jarred Williams, is one of the formerly incarcerated people to have his art on display. 

Future IDs is a multi-year, social art project about individual stories of transformation and how those stories collectively can help reframe the narrative of re-entry. It comprises art/future planning workshops, exhibitions and public programs across California, building towards an arts-based public service campaign. The central idea is for returning citizens to create new identification cards for their future selves — perhaps for a dream job, a role in society, or a continuing role with family, such as father or mother. 



Initially, when Jarred met the Future ID’s director and curator, Gregory Sale, he told him that he was living his dream job: “All I ever wanted to be was Director of Research.” Sale noted that Jarred was the only person he’d met that was living their ID and then asked him to create one for this project. Jarred’s Future ID card, and the beautiful work of so many others, can be seen on the island, as part of an installation inside of the old prison at Alcatraz. 



Alcatraz Island was the site of one of the first lighthouses on the Pacific Coast, in the 1850s. It was converted into a military prison after the Civil War, then converted to a federal maximum-security prison, which held many infamous people, from 1934 to 1963.  From 1963 to 1971, Alcatraz Island was seized and occupied by a group of Native Americans in a bold, successful protest against the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Today, the island is now a national park. The prison still stands, as do many of the artifacts from the Native American protest and occupation, as pictured above.

Future IDs was designed in collaboration with members of the Anti-Recidivism Coalition (ARC) — Aaron MercadoDominique Bell, Dr. Luis GarciaJose GonzalezKim Kim, and Ryan Lo. We are happy that one of our own had the opportunity to be included in this inspirational project. If you’re in the Bay area, go to Alcatraz to see Future IDs! Check out more of this incredible work at the Future IDs website here

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