*TONIGHT* Alternatives to Policing & The Prison Industrial Complex: a Critical Resistance Portland Community Conversation

Join us for a community conversation facilitated by Critical Resistance Portland chapter members. We hope to bring together organizations and individuals engaged in community alternatives to policing. We want to hear from you as we discuss ways to make our communities safer and how we can support one another in advancing this work.

We will center our conversation on these questions/themes: As abolitionists how do we address a reliance on the police and prison industrial complex to address harm in our communities? What kinds of alternatives do we envision? What are everyday ways we can move beyond calling the cops?

Where: Center for Intercultural Organizing
When: May 11th, 6:30-8:30pm
What: Facilitated conversation
Who: Open to all and anyone impacted by policing in Portland and specifically those from communities of color/youth/houseless/migrants/formerly imprisoned.

Location is wheelchair accessible and there is a single accessible bathroom. If you have any specific accessibility needs or questions, please contact us and we will do our best to address these.

This is part five of a five part monthly series of community conversations on the topic of policing in Portland.

Our goal in hosting these community conversations is to learn more about our communities’ experiences with policing, and to discuss our needs and the ways we can build alternatives to policing and the PIC in Portland. As members of Critical Resistance, we believe that successful movements for self-determination are those that reflect communities who are most impacted by oppression and state violence, so we seek to use these conversations to directly inform the anti-policing work that the Portland chapter is developing here.

Who we are:
Critical Resistance is a national grassroots organization working to end society’s reliance on imprisonment, policing and surveillance as responses to social, economic & political problems.

Portland’s Chapter of Critical Resistance was founded last fall. Our chapter consists of primarily folks of color who are from Portland or have lived here for years and come from various organizing backgrounds. Our chapter focuses our work on those most impacted by the prison industrial complex, namely black and brown and queer and trans/GNC folks.

Our Mission
Critical Resistance seeks to build an international movement to end the prison industrial complex (PIC) by challenging the belief that caging and controlling people makes us safe. We believe that basic necessities such as food, shelter, and freedom are what really make our communities secure. As such, our work is part of global struggles against inequality and powerlessness. The success of the movement requires that it reflect communities most affected by the PIC. Because we seek to abolish the PIC, we cannot support any work that extends its life or scope.

Our Vision:
Critical Resistance’s vision is the creation of genuinely healthy, stable communities that respond to harm without relying on imprisonment and punishment. We call our vision abolition, drawing, in part from the legacy of the abolition of slavery in the 1800′s. As PIC abolitionists we understand that the prison industrial complex is not a broken system to be fixed. The system, rather, works precisely as it is designed to—to contain, control, and kill those people representing the greatest threats to state power. Our goal is not to improve the system even further, but to shrink the system into non-existence. We work to build healthy, self-determined communities and promote alternatives to the current system.
Critical Resistance (CR) is building a member-led and member-run grassroots movement to challenge the use of punishment to “cure” complicated social problems. We know that more policing and imprisonment will not make us safer. Instead, we know that things like food, housing, and freedom are what create healthy, stable neighborhoods and communities. We work to prevent people from being arrested or locked up in prison. In all our work, we organize to build power and to stop the devastation that the reliance on imprisonment and policing has brought to ourselves, our families, and our communities.

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