As organizers, advocates or activists we have to stay busy pressuring elected officials to act on our behalf. One way for us to do that, is to consistently push for reforms at the local level that dovetail with state or federal efforts.

Below are some suggested campaigns that can be build power for and be led by directly and justice impacted people within the community.

Local Level

Voting

or Electoral Politics: The New Revolution

by Lewis Conway

Lewis Conway has almost two decades of experience in the broadcast and music industry. He spent 2,095 days in Texas prisons and 4,012 days on parole for voluntary manslaughter. He was the first formerly incarcerated person in Texas to have their…

My community and family may have been ready for me to come home from prison, but it sure didn’t feel like it. I mean, even the people at my Father’s church treated me differently; folks that had known me as a child. It felt like everywhere I went and everyone…

Voting is one of the most basic of human rights that all people should have.

I would like to set the stage, if you will, with a quote from Fannie Lou Hamer, the somewhat unsung heroine of the voting rights movement in America. After she attended a civil rights meeting…

As we enter another Presidential election cycle broadening the voter base has become an emerging tactic of both parties. Expanding, not deepening the pool of voters has been historically thwarted by partisan gerrymandering and voter purges.

Evaluating the political landscape and deciding where your vote will have the most potential impact can be intimidating; even more so, when it’s your first time voting after being incarcerated.

In some states, incarceration isn’t the only barrier to voting for folks convicted of a felony. There are states that…

Traditionally when we plan campaigns the goal is to win, as it should be. But we should also be thinking about: what power is being built for the communities we fight for and with.

Victories are effective ways to build confidence within a community that has historically been positioned at the fringes of power. However, if the outcomes are not transformational and don’t become the catalyst for systemic change, we are in danger of under-girding the same system we are attempting to overturn.

Once…

Versus Truth In Sentencing: A personal analysis

According to a recent study, “Evidence suggests that the public favors tough punishment for individuals who have been convicted of violent crimes.” The report went on to say, “While analysis of these data identified several variables that correspond with higher levels of V-punitiveness…

Lewis Conway Jr.

Writer | Formerly Incarcerated

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store