In The News

Read the latest coverage of our work in the media, as well as the opinion pieces written by our team. To interview anyone on our staff, please contact Zaineb Mohammed: zaineb@ellabakercenter.org, 510-285-8236. 

Resurrected: Formerly Incarcerated Change-Makers

In order to reduce prison over-crowding the Justice Department is releasing about 6,000 non-violent inmates early. Darris Young is working to make sure upon release individuals can successfully transition after incarceration. On the Next edition of Making Contact we’ll meet more individuals... Read More

State OKs millions for jail upgrades in Yuba, Colusa

That creates a situation in which poor people and people of color have to be arrested with a felony and sent to jail in order to receive the treatment they desperately need, said Emily Harris, state field director at the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights based in Oakland. "The message that (... Read More

Santa Clara and Alameda counties get state funding for new jails

Emily Harris, field director of Oakland-based Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, said after the meeting that while jail facilities may be in need of improvements, "the same could be said for shelters, emergency rooms, social services and counselors." "Are they getting every person... Read More

From Behind Bars, a Rap Artist Challenges a Culture of Injustice

“The way that we frame punishment as being an effective mechanism of public safety—the evidence doesn’t really show that harsher sentences or criminalizing more activities act as an effective deterrent,” says Vargas, who now works as the state advocate for the Ella Baker... Read More

Think It’s Hard Finding a Place to Live? Try Doing So With a Criminal Record

In a recent survey of formerly incarcerated people and their families, the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights found that 79 percent of respondents had been denied housing because of their own criminal record or a relative’s. One in ten reported that family members were evicted when their... Read More

Google to Provide $2.35 Million in Funds for Black Lives Matter Activism

The Ella Baker Center hopes to develop a police violence reporting app and help low-earning workers and the formerly incarcerated earn more in the restaurant industry with the help of two $500,000 grants from the company. Read More

Alameda County Slated to Receive $54 Million for Santa Rita Jail Expansion

The proposal was particularly troubling given that in March, the Alameda County Board of Supervisors agreed to reduce jail funding and prioritize social services — a central goal of the " Jobs Not Jails " campaign of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights , an Oakland-based... Read More

Google.org gives $2.35 million to groups fighting for racial justice

Oakland's Ella Baker Center is receiving two grants of $500,000. The first will supportBlack Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors, a fellow with the center who is working with the ACLU on a police violence reporting app. The second will go to the center's Restore Oakland program to... Read More

Released Inmates Will Need More Than a 'Ban the Box' Measure to Rejoin Society

As the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights recently reported , four out of five formerly incarcerated surveyed this year were denied housing or were determined ineligible due to criminal backgrounds. President Obama has among his announcements today new federal guidelines on admitting people with... Read More

Hillary Clinton's Racial Justice Platform Is Finally Taking Shape

Per a report by CNN’s Tanzina Vega this week, a recent survey by the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights found that 76 percent of former inmates said finding work after being released was difficult or nearly impossible. The stink of criminalization extends beyond the prison walls, and it... Read More