Ronald “Elder” Freeman Memorial Policy Fellowship

About LSPC: LSPC organizes communities impacted by the criminal justice system and advocates for the release of incarcerated people, to restore human and civil rights, and to reunify families and communities. We build public awareness of structural racism in policing, the courts and prison system and we advance racial and gender justice in all our work. Our strategies include legal support, trainings, advocacy, public education, grassroots mobilization, and developing community partnerships.

What is the Elder Freeman Memorial Policy Fellowship?

The Ronald “Elder” Freeman Memorial Policy Fellowship is project of Legal Services for Prisoners with Children. Ronald “Elder” Freeman was a legendary revolutionary pillar in the Bay Area, a lifelong Freedom Fighter in the Black Liberation Struggle and an original member of the Southern California chapter of the Black Panther Party. This fellowship honors his work and legacy.

We are looking for three (3) formerly incarcerated (in jail or prison) people to join our office for an intensive year long fellowship program to learn grassroots organizing, legislative and administrative advocacy, and other strategies to run local and state campaigns with the goal of elevating the leadership of formerly incarcerated people in criminal justice reform.

This year’s Policy Fellowship will also provide the opportunity for young adults between the ages of 18-24 to participate in the program by reserving up to two slots specifically for the age demographic. Historically, young adults have often been at the forefront of most successful social movements. This will ensure LSPC’s Policy Fellowship includes multi-generational representation, is consistent with this rich history, and includes formerly incarcerated individuals with diverse backgrounds and life experiences fighting collectively to reform the criminal justice system.

The work is based in Oakland, with routine travel to Sacramento. Program participants should also anticipate traveling to other locations in California and outside the state.

Policy Fellows Will…
  • Work with coalitions and legislative offices to draft bill language and move up to three bills through the legislative process.
  • Monitor state legislative bills, write support and opposition letters, and engage in other advocacy as needed including attending lobby days and organizing LSPC/AOUON’s annual Quest for Democracy lobby day.
  • Advocate with All Of Us or None for releasing incarcerated people, reunifying families, and restoring human and civil rights through storytelling, public speaking, and social media campaigning.
  • Engage with and empower their communities through grassroots organizing.
  • Build and maintain relationships with supportive state and local policyholders.
  • Advance the right and responsibility of incarcerated and formerly incarcerated people to speak and be heard, transform lives and communities, and fully participate in all aspects of society.
  • Develop a critical understanding of the root causes of mass incarceration.
  • Use the skills they gain to advocate for the empowerment and enfranchisement of all formerly incarcerated people.
  • Develop critical skills and experience necessary for a full-time position as an organizer or criminal justice advocate.

What is the time commitment?

Each fellow commits to a schedule of 40 hours per week which may require some evenings and weekends. The year-long Fellowship begins January 2019.

What is the compensation?

Compensation is $18 per hour, paid every two weeks. Benefits include medical, vision, and dental insurance, 2 weeks paid vacation, and 5 paid sick days.

Who should apply?

Anyone who has been convicted / incarcerated (in prison or jail) and who meets the following requirements:

  • A passion to be empowered and to empower others through political engagement.
  • The ability to work independently and complete tasks as assigned with support.
  • A commitment to ending the mass criminalization and incarceration of black and brown bodies.
  • A commitment to ending state violence perpetrated against black, brown, and poor communities.
  • A commitment to abstaining from and challenging gender violence in any form.
  • A desire to learn.
  • A desire to work collaboratively with groups and individuals from different communities, backgrounds, and professions (from organizers to attorneys to politicians).
  • A willingness to commit to periodically reading and discussing dense political materials.
  • A willingness to commit to crafting multiple persuasive letters and written works during the course of the fellowship.
  • Mastery of, or willingness to master, Microsoft Word, Google Documents, Gmail, Facebook, Twitter (and other internet and computer tools).

How to apply:

Applications are due Friday, October 19, 2018.
***Thank you to all who applied! We are currently reviewing applications and will be in contact with you shortly***

Please provide:

  • A resume
  • A cover letter explaining your interest in and qualification for the fellowship, and

A short (2 pages or fewer) personal statement describing either (1) a specific law or jail/prison policy that has impacted you, your family, or your community or (2) your vision of how you would end mass incarceration through policy.

Please submit and questions and all requested documents to Policy Manager Sabina Crocette at: sabina@prisonerswithchildren.org