WBEZ | social justice http://www.wbez.org/tags/social-justice Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en After Hadiya and "Nirbhaya": From Chicago to Delhi What Does Justice Look Like? http://www.wbez.org/series/chicago-amplified/after-hadiya-and-nirbhaya-chicago-delhi-what-does-justice-look-106823 <p><p>Here in the United States, Chicago in particular, street crime has taken the lives of far too many of our youth. In India, the issue of sexual violence has captured headlines. The tragic deaths of Hadiya Pendleton, a 15-year-old girl who was shot and killed just a few blocks away from her school, and &quot;Nirbhaya,&quot; the 23-year-old woman who was gang-raped by six men in a moving bus in Delhi, raise the question: what does justice for victims and survivors look like?</p><ul><li><strong>Cheryl Graves</strong>, founder and Co-Director of Community Justice for Youth Institute</li><li><strong>Mariame Kaba</strong>, founder and Director of Project NIA</li><li><strong>Sangeetha Ravichandran</strong>, program coordinator at A Long Walk Home&#39;s Girl/Friends Leadership Institute</li><li><strong>Alice Kim</strong>, director of The Public Square (co-moderator)</li><li><strong>Ryan Lugalia-Hollon</strong>, Justice Fellow at the Adler School and member of the SJI team at UIC (co-moderator)</li></ul><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/IHC-webstory_15.jpg" style="float: left;" title="" /></div><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><br />Recorded live Saturday, April 6, 2013 at the UIC Pavilion part of WBEZ&#39;s 6th Annual Global Activism Expo.</p></p> Sat, 06 Apr 2013 14:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/chicago-amplified/after-hadiya-and-nirbhaya-chicago-delhi-what-does-justice-look-106823 Add 2 talks Modern Day Coons and Cotton Fields, music that matters http://www.wbez.org/story/add-2-talks-modern-day-coons-and-cotton-fields-music-matters-95712 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2012-January/2012-01-20/399901_10150699704154619_810684618_12128844_1807931135_n.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>At the beginning of the movement, Hip Hop music served as a voice for the urban youth, the oppressed, it was a tool used to raise awareness to inner city turmoil. &nbsp;While that version of Hip Hop is no longer as pervasive as it once was, it still exists. In fact, it is still <em>that</em> Hip Hop that is capable of sparking discussion, addressing societal ills and affecting change. It is that strand of Hip Hop that <a href="https://twitter.com/add2themc">Add 2</a> excels at. Through his series of Mixtapes, he has shown that music is still a potent vehicle for social commentary. Add 2 joined Jesse Menendez on Vocalo's <a href="http://www.vocalo.org/musicvoxblog">MusicVox</a> to talk about his music and why he stands up and speaks his mind.</p><p>Interview edited by Adam Peindl.</p></p> Fri, 20 Jan 2012 21:54:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/add-2-talks-modern-day-coons-and-cotton-fields-music-matters-95712 Sheriff mulls freeing inmates wanted on immigration charges http://www.wbez.org/story/sheriff-mulls-freeing-inmates-wanted-immigration-charges-89233 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/archives/images/cityroom/cityroom_20090908_tarnold_9361_Sher_large.png" alt="" /><p><p>On any given day, the Cook County Jail holds hundreds of inmates picked up on criminal charges who also happen to be wanted for an immigration violation. Sheriff Tom Dart’s office keeps them up to 48 hours beyond when the criminal cases would allow them out. That’s to allow Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the federal agency known as ICE, to take them into deportation proceedings. Now Dart tells WBEZ he’s reconsidering that policy because it could be compromising public safety. We report from our West Side bureau.</p><p><br> SOUND: Keys open a jail door.<br> <br> Beneath the Cook County criminal courthouse, one jailer pulls out keys and unlocks a door. Another, Officer Carmelo Santiago, leads the way.<br> <br> SANTIAGO: We’re going through this tunnel that connects us from the courthouse to the jail. This way is where the detainee is going to be coming.<br> <br> We step around crusts of sandwiches that the day’s new arrivals got for lunch.<br> <br> SANTIAGO: And this is the receiving process.<br> <br> SOUND: Entering the receiving area.<br> <br> The smell of unwashed feet wafts from chain-link pens full of inmates who’re waiting to be processed. Santiago shows me the paperwork of a Mexican national busted last night in Chicago.<br> <br> SANTIAGO: This individual was arrested for driving on a revoked or suspended license on a DUI.<br> <br> A lot of immigrants who drink and drive end up in this jail. That’s because Illinois considers DUI a felony when the motorist lacks a valid driver’s license. And the state doesn’t allow any undocumented immigrant to get one.<br> <br> SANTIAGO: He was issued a bond from the court for $15,000.<br> <br> Santiago points out that the defendant could walk free for just $1,500. Except, his file shows something else.<br> <br> SANTIAGO: This specific individual has a detainer that was placed on him through immigration.<br> <br> MITCHELL: This man can post bond or not [and] he’s going to end up in the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement?<br> <br> SANTIAGO: That is correct.<br> <br> Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart says he doesn’t like holding on to inmates like this one for ICE to take away. He says these holds make it harder for local police to fight crime. Residents see cops and start thinking about the threat of deportation — the threat to the criminals, maybe even to themselves.<br> <br> DART: It does not lend itself to a sense of community where people will gladly come to you with information about crimes, get involved as a witness, even come forward as a victim, frankly.<br> <br> Over the years Dart has taken steps to reduce the jail’s role in immigration enforcement. The sheriff’s office says it no longer calls ICE with information about inmates. The sheriff no longer allows ICE agents in holding cells near bond courtrooms. The jail has put up big signs — in English, Spanish and Polish — that tell new inmates they have no obligation to answer questions about immigration status. But Dart says something has him in a bind. Every day ICE requests that the jail hold certain inmates two extra days so the agency can put the detainees into deportation proceedings. The jail ends up turning over about a half-dozen inmates to ICE each day. Two years ago, Dart quietly sought some legal advice from Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez’s office.<br> <br> DART: The opinion was really unambiguous. It said I had to comply with the detainer. So, when the detainer was placed on somebody, I had to give the ICE officers 48 hours to come and pick somebody up and that it was not in my discretion.<br> <br> MITCHELL: Could you ignore the state’s attorney’s opinion?<br> <br> DART: Then I open myself up personally to civil liability.<br> <br> Dart says that could include damages for someone hurt by a released inmate or the legal defense if an anti-immigrant group filed suit . . .<br> <br> DART: . . . which is not something that myself or my five children signed up to do. And I open our office up to unbelievable amounts of liability.<br> <br> But some immigrant advocates are pressing Dart about the ICE detainers. They confronted a few of his top aides at a meeting a few weeks ago. Reverend Walter Coleman got to question a sheriff’s attorney, Patricia Horne.<br> <br> HORNE: It’s a legal document just like an arrest warrant, which we, under law, have to recognize.<br> <br> COLEMAN: Under what law?<br> <br> HORNE: Well, in this case, under federal law.<br> <br> COLEMAN: There is no federal law. You cannot cite me the statute or the chapter or the section. You know that that’s the truth and we will not sit here and be lied to like this.<br> <br> It turns out ICE isn’t citing a statute either. Lately federal officials have acknowledged that local jails don’t have to comply with immigration detainer requests. Last month the San Francisco County Sheriff’s Department quit honoring the requests for certain inmates. Here in Cook County, Sheriff Dart says that’s got him wondering again whether he has to comply with the 48-hour holds. He tells me he’s planning to ask the State’s Attorney’s Office for an updated opinion. He could do that quietly again and most people wouldn’t even know. But Dart doesn’t always operate quietly. You might remember that, twice over the last three years, the sheriff has ordered his deputies to suspend enforcement of foreclosure evictions.<br> <br> MITCHELL: You run one of the country’s biggest jails. Would you really be willing to become a national lightening rod on the issue of immigration enforcement?<br> <br> DART: Well, there is this notion of justice that we’ve always felt very strongly about in this office. And whether it’s dealing with people who we felt were being dispossessed of their houses in the mortgage crisis. So we stopped. It’s the same issue here, where we are attempting to do what is right and just.<br> <br> But Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokesman Greg Palmore has a warning for any sheriff who lets inmates walk free despite an immigration hold.<br> <br> PALMORE: Though ICE has not sought to compel compliance through legal proceedings, jurisdictions who ignore detainers bear the risk of allowing that individual back into the public domain before they were thoroughly vetted to insure that this individual doesn’t have anything outstanding that warrants us to move further in that particular case.<br> <br> Sheriff Dart acknowledges there could be a downside to ignoring immigration detainer requests. Let’s say ICE knows the inmate arrived in the country under an alias or is violent — and the information didn’t appear in the jail’s background check. But Dart says letting some immigrants out of jail even though ICE wants them could be worth the risk. It might help remove the deportation issue from everyday policing. The sheriff says that could make streets in Cook County safer.</p></p> Fri, 15 Jul 2011 23:13:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/sheriff-mulls-freeing-inmates-wanted-immigration-charges-89233 'Dead Man Walking' nun donates personal collection to DePaul http://www.wbez.org/story/activism/dead-man-walking-nun-donates-personal-collection-depaul <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/Prejean.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>A leading social justice activist is making Chicago the new home for her personal collections. Sister Helen Prejean is best known for her work with death row inmates detailed in the book and movie &ldquo;Dead Man Walking.&rdquo; Prejean's donation to DePaul University comes as Governor Pat Quinn is considering a bill to abolish the death penalty in Illinois. Prejean says she hopes the governor signs the bill.</p> <div>&ldquo;It's an important decision that he's doing, he's not lightly going to do it,&rdquo; she said. &ldquo;I just expect he is going to put his seal of approval on it. I don't think he is going to counter it.&rdquo;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Quinn has until March 18th to act on the legislation. There has been a moratorium on executions in Illinois since 2000 when former Governor George Ryan called for a review of the death penalty.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>At a press conference Wednesday, Prejean said DePaul&rsquo;s commitment to social justice was what convinced her to donate her collection there. She said DePaul&rsquo;s Center for Justice in Capital Cases&rsquo; leading Professor, Andrea Lyon, helped Governor Ryan draw attention to the death penalty. She acknowledged the role Ryan played in making current death penalty abolition legislation possible in Illinois.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>&ldquo;He stood up in front of the nation and he commuted those sentences,&rdquo; she said. &ldquo;It was so against what politicians would say was a wise thing to do.&rdquo;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Prejean's 50 boxes of papers, spanning 30 years of work, will be used to teach law students starting this fall. The boxes contain letters to governors, correspondence with prisoners, speeches, and memorabilia from the set of &ldquo;Dead Man Walking.&rdquo; The archives will be open to the public sometime next year.</div></p> Wed, 09 Feb 2011 21:49:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/activism/dead-man-walking-nun-donates-personal-collection-depaul