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Weekly Report from the Board Meeting at Holman Prison 1.22.20

                 Weekly Report from the Board Meeting at Holman Prison 1.22.20

The great work being done at the UNA archives for our organization is proving to be more than a trip down memory lane, although it is that too. More importantly it is immortalizing two men, Jesse Morrison and Brian Baldwin, Jesse, the founder and Brian who later took over. As they were both very close friends I cannot begin to say what it means to me on a personal level and for the organization to see their pictures displayed. Justice on the one hand but also heartbreaking at the same time! Project Hope to Abolish the Death Penalty continues to exist because of them and of course the others who followed them.

Our thanks also to Jennifer Lee Pate, UNA Librarian who wrote on Facebook: “ I’m so proud of this work being done - and my small part in helping bring this archive to UNA is probably going to be the highlight of my librarianship.” In response to a request for details about Jennifer Lee Pate’s role in all the work being done, Dr. Katie Owens-Murphy wrote: “Jennifer is really responsible for all of this, as the Alabama death row exhibit was her idea, and she did much of the design and publicity surrounding the event and is responsible for its migration to our public library.” The Board will be writing thank you cards to both Jennifer and to Ashley, Dr. Owens-Murphy post graduate assistant. We are indeed fortunate!

Meanwhile we are continuing to post updates in what is called “the library” at Holman and are gratified that both officers and inmates are following developments with interest. And yes, they are impressed!

We would like to highlight “Our vision for a better Alabama: Part 1 by Alabama Arise which raises 4 of its 2020 issues: “Stop the debt trap for Alabama payday borrowers. End the injustices in Alabama’s death penalty system. Stop criminal justice debt from putting thousands of lives on hold. Break down barriers to voting right in Alabama.”

On Sunday Browder Ministries stopped by with treats, and we do mean treats, which we all very much enjoyed! Thank you Chaplain Browder and all who are part of the Ministries for all you do for us and have for so many years!

Esther did a brief on line interview with Federal Courts Reporter Joseph Atmonavage with the Star Leger in New Jersey about our view on the federal death penalty and the Trump’s administration push to reinstate it. We said that our view on the federal death penalty is the same as on the state level: Whether one looks at it from the right or the left it is obvious that it does not work, does not deter crime, targets the poor and people of color, is at times wrong, costs more than life without and is certainly not justice. Whoever is pushing it whether on the state or federal level does so to play to the mob and sees it as a vote getter. 

And in closing and as always, we continue to thank all our generous donors who either gave by going to our website and using the “donate” button or who gave directly. Our thanks to all who believe in what we do and stand with us. You make all the difference!


                                                                                 Esther