A growing number of popular companies have found that exploiting incarcerated people for their labor is easier, and cheaper than producing those products by other labor means. What do Rihanna, Jesus and Albert Einstein have in common? The New Era of mass incarceration in America began in 1973 and continues to this day.This new era can be attributed to three causes of disparities in state imprisonment. Her Campus may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. –The 13th Amendment of the United States Constitution, Section 1. The 13th Amendment has been used to force incarcerated people in the United States to participate in labor and other arduous tasks against their will. Predicting recidivism for released state prison offenders examining the influence of individual and neighborhood characteristics and spatial contagion on the likelihood of reincarceration. New York: New Press. The creation of policies like “Stop-and-frisk” allowed for police officers to stop and question anyone who they deemed suspicious. Furthermore, in 1977, the Supreme Court ruled in Jones v. North Carolina Prisoners Labor Union that incarcerated people do not have the right to join labor unions under the First Amendment. What sustainable steps can you take to advance criminal justice reform? On December 6, 1865, the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified, the text of which stated that: “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”. It also reaches far outside of American prisons and penitentiaries and into our cultural norms and political institutions. Profiles in Civic Leadership: Sarah Taylor Mayhak, Discussion on Parole & Parole Reform – Mahatma Gandhi Center for Global Nonviolence Web Journal. Attitudes held about people convicted of crime result from person-centered or reformist approaches (Miller, Miller, Djoric, & Patton, 2015; Stahler, Mennis, Belenko, Welsh, Hiller, & Zajac, 2013) that are closely linked to justifications given for the enslavement of people of color in the United States, specifically, religious, pseudo-scientific, and a white supremacist ideology. Because of this, mass incarceration has become a method of disenfranchising Black voters, shrinking the electorate, and engineering voter suppression. Calling ourselves the Amend the 13th Coalition, we will convene a conversation among a diverse group of thought leaders, grassroots organizations, academics, and students on our campaign to strike the Punishment Clause from the 13th Amendment.

Miller, R. J., Miller, J. W., Djoric, J. Alexander cites that approximately a half-million people are in prison or jail for a drug offense today, compared to the 41,100 in 1980, which is an increase of 1,100 percent. While many agree now that the enslavement and bondage of human beings is immoral, unethical and against American democratic values, many are unaware of the forms slavery takes in today’s society and the institutions and practices that are its direct descendants. Because of this, Virginia is actively participating in and contributing to the prison-industrial complex. It seems necessary to ask whether private prisons that compete for a share of the prison market are in the best interest of taxpayers, the government, and those housed there or whether, like slavery, they have been established to profit from mainly Black and Brown bodies.

The Virginia code requires that all “departments, institutions, and agencies of the Commonwealth that are supported in whole or in part with funds from the state treasury for their use” must purchase items manufactured by incarcerated persons in state correctional facilities.According to the Prison Policy Initiative, Virginia pays incarcerated people between $0.55 and $0.80 an hour for their labor. Moreover, existing policies are not designed to influence how we think about reentry and those affected by these policies (See Second Chance Reauthorization Act and First Step Act). Prisons, companies, and governments continue to profit from the prison labor industry. In today’s world, it’s more important than ever to use your voice, your privilege, and your education for the betterment of society. The new Jim Crow: Mass incarceration in the age of colorblindness. August 2020 Trendsetters Survey Giveaway Offical Rules, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand Has One Important Word for Young Women: VOTE, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand talks Election 2020 and Women in Politics, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand Wants All College Women to Vote, Why New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand Is Urging You To Vote, A Look Inside Too Faced Beauty Director Elyse Reneau's Makeup Bag, Introducing Beauty School, A Virtual Makeup & Skincare Event, 5 Autumn Activities You Can Still Safely Enjoy During COVID, 4 TikTok Accounts to Follow for the Best Post-Grad Career Advice.

Check your U.S. voter registration status or register to vote here. Throughout the second half of the 19th century, laws were created that were specifically meant to target Black people. Final Presidential Debate: What You Should Know. Sep 17, 2020 | Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement, criminal justice, Issues | 0 comments, By Angelina Clapp (JMU ’20, Political Science), Kyel Towler (JMU ’21, Communication Studies) and Ryan Ritter (JMU ’22, History and International Affairs). Using the 13th Amendment as a starting point, policy discussions must begin with the agreement that the US prison system is a slave-based system according to the US Constitution irrespective of arguments to the contrary and that it is a tool of state-sanctioned punishment. The third disparity is structural disadvantages that disproportionately impact people of color. The reentry population is the same population subjected to mass incarceration. As the era of convict leasing slowed, the Jim Crow era ushered in new policies and laws that disproportionately impacted Black Americans. The 13th Amendment prohibits slavery and involuntary servitude except as a punishment for crime.

Texas tough: The rise of America’s prison empire.

Out of the total 6.8 million incarcerated population, 2.3 million are black. Moreover, the relationship does not permit the enjoyment of all the rights and attributes of citizenship by people of color in general and justice involved people in particular. Michelle Alexander, scholar and author of The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, describes this as a process where “people are swept into the criminal justice system, branded criminals and felons, locked up for longer periods of time than most other countries in the world who incarcerate people…and then released into a permanent second-class status in which they are stripped of basic civil and human rights, like the right to vote, the right to serve on juries, and the right to be free of legal discrimination in employment, housing, access to public benefits.” This system has been put in place in order to control every aspect of the lives of incarcerated people.

The VCE then sells those goods for a substantial profit while paying their workers mere cents per hour. America makes up 5 percent of the world’s population; however, we house 25 percent of the world’s inmate population as a whole causing us to have the largest incarceration rate in the world. What responsibility does the JMU community have to recognize that their items are manufactured by incarcerated people? Background: Tracing Modern Day Slavery to the 13th Amendment. Because of a loophole in the Thirteenth Amendment, Black Americans have historically and presently been subjected to structural disadvantages that reinforce cheap labor from the vestiges of slavery. Boston, MA: Northeastern University Press. I also love listening to Investigative Journalism podcasts, my favorite is Serial! Even though the 13th amendment protects against “cruel and unusual punishment” in America, prisons are overcrowded, have harsh conditions, exploit the labor of the incarcerated people, and lack the proper capacity to respond to national emergencies like pandemics. Through the rise of laws targeting Black Americans and en masse conviction, Black Americans have been disproportionately incarcerated and oppressed by the incarceral system. It seems illogical to omit these factors from any historical overview related to incarceration or the reentry of the today’s prison population because persons of color continue to be targeted and disproportionately incarcerated even after having gone through the system. Why does the United States have the largest number of incarcerated people. Required fields are marked *. Another important statistic mentioned in the Netflix documentary 13TH is that African American men account for 6.5% of the United States population, but a striking 40.2% of the prison population. A cursory review of literature related to the historical context giving rise to the targeted incarceration of Black men in the U.S. suggests that very few contemporary scholars make the link between the U.S. system of slavery and the U.S. system of imprisonment. Your email address will not be published. Implicit bias impacts the perceptions the public can have on people of color.

Within the subcommittee meeting, Delegate Emily Brewer, R-Simthfield, said “she had toured those inmate-staffed factories and said the workers, incarcerated as they may be, work voluntarily, learn skills and take pride in their labor.” Whereas Carter contrasted “Inmates have a choice to sit in confinement or work for as little as 80 cents an hour,” he told the committee”. These new policies expanded the use of imprisonment as punishment for all felony charges, eventually becoming widely used for sex and drug offenses.

They do not, however, call for any legislative action that focuses squarely on the United States Constitution, the foundation of today’s justice system. Criminal Justice and Behavior, 40(6), 690-711, Locations:137-58 Thurston Street, Lower Level Suite Springfield Gardens, New York 11413, 130 West 113th StreetHarlem, New York 10026Ph: 347.626.7233Fax: 718.233.9850Email: info@citizensinc.org, Clothing And Supplies For The Formerly Incarcerated. A loophole in Section 26 of the United States Code 3306(c)(21) states that they do not have to pay taxes because the manufacturing within prisons by incarcerated people is not considered employment. New York: Metropolitan Books. This system thrives off of punishment. This is another example of the exploitation of incarcerated people.

Among those that do, they tend to focus upon racism and its impact on social policies around the justice system while briefly mentioning the slave system in discussions related to the historical context put forth for readers to review (Alexander, 2010; Christianson, 1998; Perkinson, 2010). A blog by the James Madison Center for Civic Engagement & Dukes Vote.