Black child, white child: Talking to our children about race

A reflection for Mother’s Day

Amara & BrooklynAs workers in the fight for racial justice and equity, our experiences and the issues we address as staff at EJUSA indelibly reflect within our daily lives. As team members, we talk explicitly about the challenges of race within criminal justice, social and economic equity, and the gamut of issues our nation faces and their impact on traction in our work. Our passion, planning and movement-building happens with analysis and clarity on the end goals.

For those of us with children, we go home to the realities of what race means in our lives and the inevitability of having to discuss race and answer the questions our children may ask in the midst of the chaos and injustice.

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Why I Joined the EJUSA Associate Board

Sam KuhnWhen my friend Erin Ellis approached me with the prospect of joining the EJUSA Associate Board, I jumped at the opportunity. EJUSA’s work to make the criminal justice system more fair, effective, and responsive is right in line with the values my work at the National Network for Safe Communities at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. Ending the death penalty and developing a just, trauma-informed response to crime and violence are new frontiers for me in the complex fight to reform the justice system.

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Recommended: EJUSA’s Shari Silberstein on TV

Former New York City Council member Ronnie M. Eldridge hosted EJUSA Executive Director Shari Silberstein for her 30-minute show, Eldridge & Co. The show airs several times this week on local New York City’s CUNY TV with Shari and Ronnie talking about the national decline in the death penalty, EJUSA’s campaigns in favor of repeal, and our growing work with crime survivors.

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Another Year of Impact ‒ Read the report.

2015 Impact ReportAs the Chair of the EJUSA Board of Directors, I know all about the difference EJUSA makes in the movement to end the death penalty and transform the justice system. I see it every day.

That is why it brings me great pleasure to share with you EJUSA’s 2015 impact report. Click here to read the report.

This report highlights some of our biggest successes of the past year, including helping to repeal the death penalty in Nebraska, engaging conservatives and Evangelicals in the fight to end the death penalty, and expanding our programming to help crime survivors rebuild their lives.

This holiday season, I want to thank you for making this work possible. Your donations and encouragement have made 2015 a banner year for this organization, and I am so grateful for your commitment to justice.
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EJUSA Associate Board throws enchanting holiday party in Manhattan

Shari at the partyTo help ring in the holidays, EJUSA’s Associate Board gathered friends and colleagues to celebrate with EJUSA staff, board members, and local supporters. More than 50 people came to “Libations and Justice for All” at the offices of Thoughtworks in midtown Manhattan to learn more about EJUSA’s vision and how they can help achieve it. EJUSA Executive Director Shari Silberstein gave a presentation that included an overview of EJUSA’s impact in 2015 and a preview of our exciting 2016 agenda.

The Associate Board is an all-volunteer group of young local professionals whose purpose is to advance EJUSA’s mission by increasing our visibility in New York City and recruiting new supporters for our work.

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Think of EJUSA on #GivingTuesday

Think of EJUSA on #GivingTuesday

Today is Giving Tuesday, a time when people come together to give to the causes that change people’s lives.

Giving Tuesday is an opportunity to step away from the hustle and bustle of shopping days and holidays and make a difference.

This Giving Tuesday, we invite you to make a difference through a gift to EJUSA.

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Recommended: Review EJUSA on

GreatNonprofits logoWill you tell the world why you love EJUSA?

You can help us share our mission, gain visibility, and make an even bigger impact by reviewing us on GreatNonprofits – a site like Yelp! or TripAdvisor. EJUSA has been honored as a “Top-Rated” nonprofit for two years in a row.

Can you help us make it for a third year by posting a review of your experience with us? All reviews will be visible to potential donors, followers, and activists. It’s easy and only takes 3 minutes!

Visit our GreatNonprofits profile to get started.

An interview with the director of EJUSA’s Trauma Advocacy Initiative

Sarah interviewing FatimahLast month, we introduced you to the expansion of our work to build a better justice system, including two new staff. I had the opportunity to sit down with one of them, Fatimah Loren Muhammad, and learn about her first few weeks, what a “trauma-informed” justice system means, and her vision for this first year.

Sarah Craft: I know you’re still getting your feet wet, but what do you see as the goals of the Trauma Advocacy program in the first year?

Fatimah Loren Muhammad: First of all, I want to start by saying how absolutely excited I am to join the EJUSA team. These past few weeks have been wonderful connecting with the staff and board members and the greater EJUSA community, many of whom have sent emails of encouragement as I begin my work here.

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“Pumping Oxygen into the Room”

EJUSA Executive Director Shari Silberstein and EJUSA’s longtime friend and partner, Jonathan Gradess, are featured in the Winter 2014 issue of the Government, Law and Policy Journal from the New York State Bar Association. Jonathan is the former Board Chair of New Yorkers for Alternatives to the Death Penalty and now sits on EJUSA’s Board of Directors.

Shari and Jonathan’s article, “Pumping Oxygen into the Room,” shares the story of how New York became the first state in the modern era to abandon the death penalty and what New York’s abolition meant for the movement to end the death penalty in the United States.

New York’s elimination of the death penalty sparked a new vision for abolition entirely: more than the absence of the death penalty, it was also the presence of a new paradigm driven by those solutions that were previously stymied by the death penalty’s disproportionate pull of money, attention, time, and polarization, such as adequate victims’ services and effective crime prevention. This idea became a rallying cry for not only NYADP, but also for its national partner, Equal Justice USA (EJUSA), and abolition groups in other states.

Read the full article here.