Emancipate NC was founded on the knowledge that mass incarceration and structural racism harm all of us. Prison is state-sponsored violence. We are all complicit in its harms. As an organization, we are dedicated to shifting the narrative on racialized mass incarceration through community education and mobilization. The mainstream narrative that criminalizes Black and Brown people must be transformed—so that we can all get free.
Emancipate NC is a project of the Carolina Justice Policy Center; the focus areas include subverting structural racism and creating restorative justice alternatives:
Subverting Structural Racism
Structural racism is the systematic distribution of resources, power, and opportunity in our society to the benefit of people who are white and the exclusion of people of color. It is not the same as individual bigotry or racial bias. The legacy of slavery and Jim Crow persist. American history continues to privilege “whiteness” in terms of access to quality education, decent jobs, liveable wages, homeownership, retirement benefits, and wealth. Black youth are criminalized and dehumanized through over-policing and zero-tolerance school policies. Capital punishment and solitary confinement are disproportionately conferred on Black bodies. Cash bail means that poor people—usually people of color—can’t buy their freedom, even when white people get out of jail. Through community education, we work to subvert structural racism, especially as it relates to the criminal legal system.
In our community education work, we collaborate with Black communities that are suffering from criminalization, incarceration, and structural racism. Their neighborhoods are over-policed and their members are over-arrested. Magistrates set high cash bail for the simplest crimes. Then they are coerced into pleading guilty so they can secure freedom from jail. They are also disproportionately punished with harsh sentences, and they are displaced from their friends, families, children, jobs, and homes. They are traumatized in body and in mind. Prison is state violence and it magnifies pain for all parties. Through restorative justice education, we are committed to replacing criminalization and incarceration with alternative approaches that address violence and repair harm.
Learn more and support their work at emancipatenc.org