About Us

We are named after Ella Baker, a brilliant, black hero of the civil rights movement. Following in her footsteps, we organize with Black, Brown, and low-income people to shift resources away from prisons and punishment, and towards opportunities that make our communities safe, healthy, and strong

Photo credit: Brooke Anderson

Everyone wants to live in a healthy and strong community that they have the opportunity to help shape.

But prisons, policing, and punishment-based approaches make us less safe, and prevent people of color and low-income communities from influencing policies that impact our lives. Communities face struggling schools, family separation, and a lack of opportunities as a direct result of being disproportionately policed and punished.

We must engage in a process of Truth and Reinvestment: telling the truth about the impact of our country’s long history of racial injustice, building the power of those who have been harmed, and engaging them as leaders to reinvest resources in healing our communities. 

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In a world where resources are invested in growth and support instead of punishment and prisons we will all be able to reach our full potential. Communities with more opportunity for everyone are safer, healthier, and more just for all.

Learn more about our work.

Celebrate Our
Revolutionary Roots
In 2016, the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights celebrated our 20th anniversary. Throughout our history we have reunited families, reduced incarceration, and won resources for low-income communities and people of color. Take a look back through this timeline at our powerful campaign victories - each win has made it more possible for us to build safe, healthy, and strong communities.