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weekly update – july 30, 2020

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In this issue…

Rallying to Demand COVID-19 Justice: #BlackLivesMatter #FreeThemNowCT

#LessIsMoreNY Info Session: A Conversation on Transforming How NYS Handles Technical Violations of Parole Supervision

Rallying for #BlackLivesMatter #FreeThemNowCT

Katal members Lynn, Isaiah, and Vicky gather with Katal Apprentice Community Organizer Alycia Gay for a photo on the steps of the CT Capitol.

Yesterday, Katal members and allies — including dozens of family members of incarcerated individuals and community groups including Black America Undivided, the #CancelRentCT Coalition, and ACLU-CT, convened outside of the Connecticut State Capitol for a powerful rally and speakout led by Katal members to demand Governor Lamont and the legislature address the issue of COVID-19 in correctional facilities during this month’s special session. Read our press release at this link.

“It is inhumane to keep people in prisons and jails during a pandemic. As a person with loved ones who are incarcerated, it’s sickening. This is a Black lives matter issue, and it is also a public health issue. Families are filled with a void when their loved ones are missing, especially children. End this now and release them!”

– Virginia Rodriguez, Member of the Katal Center

Katal members and community allies marching around the CT state capitol in Hartford, demanding real justice for incarcerated loved ones.

As the pandemic rages on and continues ravaging people inside CT jails and prisons, Governor Lamont and the legislature’s inaction in the midst of this public health crisis will result in needless deaths. And with 1,344 positive COVID-19 cases and seven COVID-19 deaths for incarcerated individuals thus far, every day that the Governor and legislature do not act means incarcerated individuals remain in life threatening danger.

Read our full release at this link.

Check out our twitter thread to see videos and more photos from yesterday’s action at this link.

CT residents can take action today to demand Gov. Lamont and lawmakers free as many people as possible from jails and prisons across the state to save lives. Use our action tool to tell lawmakers: We cannot leave people behind during the COVID-19 public health crisis. #FreeThemNOWCT

#LessIsMoreNY Info Session:

A Conversation About Parole Reform in New York

Every week we receive a number of inquiries about the #LessIsMoreNY campaign. So earlier this week, Katal members led an information session for community residents about the  #LessIsMoreNY bill and campaign — what the bill is, what it does, and how to get involved. During the session, Katal members Cassondra, Gerdzer, Lisa, and Tatiana shared their experiences with New York’s deeply broken parole system and how the #LessIsMoreNY Act would have greatly helped their situations had it been passed. The discussion included covering the next steps to pass the legislation and details on how participants can get involved and take action to get the bill passed. #LessIsMoreNY will save lives and help people successfully transition back into their communities, families, and jobs. The time to pass this legislation is NOW.

We thank all who participated and joined us for this important conversation, and we hope you’ll take action below and join us in the effort to get this bill passed!

New York residents can join us in taking action here.

If you’d like to join us for the next Info Session, or to get more information on #LessIsMoreNY, contact Lead Organizer Kenyatta Thompson at

Keep practicing social distancing, wear your mask, wash your hands, and check in on your neighbors. If you want to get involved, learn more about our work, or just connect, please don’t hesitate to reach out – we’re online and on socials via @katalcenter.

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