Faith Education

Pre-TI Dialogue #1: Our Children, Our Prisons

September 12, 2015

In the months leading up to Trinity’s annual theological conference, Trinity Institute (TI), a series of events called the Pre-TI Dialogues will offer a preview of TI2016 for all who are interested (whether you’ve registered yet or not). These forums are a chance to engage in some of the issues that will be explored in more depth at the conference, including mass incarceration, structural racism, and policy change. The Dialogues are free and open to the public.

“Our Children, Our Prisons,” the first of the Pre-TI Dialogues, took place on September 12. The event focused on the impact of incarceration on young people—those whose parents are imprisoned or are imprisoned themselves. In the United States each year, approximately 2,570 children as young as 13 are sentenced to juvenile life without parole. New York and North Carolina are the only two states that automatically prosecute all 16 and 17 year olds as adults (no matter the offense). Nationwide, more than 2.7 million children have an incarcerated parent—1 in 9 African American children, 1 in 28 Hispanic children, and 1 in 57 white children—a situation human rights advocates have called “the greatest threat to childhood well-being in the U.S.”

This event brought together nationally recognized experts and local activists to clarify the issues, spark discussion, and offer practical advice on how to make a difference. Panel speakers: Dr. Divine Pryor, Judge Judith S. Kaye, the Rev. Vivian Nixon, and Diana Ortiz.

Click here for a PDF of the reflection questions

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