activists across the movement for black lives bail black mothers out of jail for mother’s day

May 11, 2017

Mother’s Day is just around the corner, and, being the procrastinating child that I am, I’m still scrambling to make the day a special one for the woman who brought me into this world and deserves nothing less. For many equally deserving mothers, however, Sunday is no cause for celebration, as they are forced to spend the day in cages away from their families at the hands of the criminal justice system.

By Hari Ziyad*, AFROPUNK Writer

Activists across the Movement for Black Lives are hoping to change that. As reported by The Nation, organizers with Southerners on New Ground (SONG), the Movement for Black Lives, Color of Change and other activist groups have raised more than $250,000 for “National Mama’s Bail Out Day.”

The Nation notes that Black women make up 44 percent of women in jails, with almost a third of imprisoned women nationwide suffering from serious mental-health issues. The bail system has been critiqued for contributing to the corrupting idea that justice should be based on money, an idea that continues to underline the entire criminal justice system in America. The United States spends less on public defense as a percentage per capita than every European nation, and, without the resources to adequately take on each case, 90 to 95 percent of the clients of public defenders plead guilty. The law is very much a pay to play game, and, when Black people have 12 times less wealth than white people, it is very much an anti-Black game as well.

The Mother’s Day bailout will free at least 30 women nationwide, and organizers are still raising funds. Make a Black mother’s day by contributing here!: https://brooklynbailfund.org/national-bail-out-day-donate

Banner photo via Black Mothers Breastfeeding Club

*Hari Ziyad is a New York based storyteller and writer for AFROPUNK. They are also the editor-in-chief of RaceBaitR, deputy editor of Black Youth Project, and assistant editor of Vinyl Poetry & Prose. You can follow them on Twitter @hariziyad.