COVID-19 Crisis in Prisons, Jails, and Detention Centers: Historical Perspective and Global Context is the first event in a new series hosted by the Harvard Global Health Institute in partnership with Harvard’s Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics. This webinar will bring together a diverse set of panelists to address the current state of the COVID-19 virus in places of detention and incarceration around the world, and discuss how historical contexts for present-day carceral conditions, like overcrowding, and current practices, such as solitary confinement, have enabled the virus to spread. By critically examining the history of global carceral systems, we aim to highlight how deliberate design has exacerbated harm to this population, reinforcing inequality and discrimination, and thwarting efforts to respond to the virus.
Keynote: Bruce Reilly
Bruce Reilly, is Deputy Director of both Voice Of The Expereinced (VOTE), and Voters Organized to Educate. He is a writer, and founding member of the Formerly Incarcerated, Convicted People and Families Movement (FICPFM). Bruce provides expert analysis on discrimination in employment, housing, and voting rights. Originally born into foster care, he found his identity as a young jailhouse lawyer for 12 years before his parole, and a 2-hour bus ride to a minimum wage job. Bruce put his knowledge to work by joining Direct Action for Rights & Equality in 2005, and played a vital role in passing significant criminal justice reforms. In 2011, Bruce moved to New Orleans to team up with VOTE, and enroll in Tulane Law School, despite having no undergrad degree, and graduated in 2014. Bruce co-founded Transcending Through Education Foundation (TTEF) with two friends who also entered prison at a young age, and earned law degrees after being released.