News of Interest

Selected news stories of interest to the Freedom Reads community.

A Rare Bright Spot for a Canine Lover Doing Time: Raising Puppies to Become Service Dogs
The Marshall Project by Adam Roberts May 10, 2024

Adam Roberts writes about the bonds he has formed with the puppies he's cared for and trained at Fishkill Correctional Facility in New York as part of their Puppies Behind Bars program.

‘I feel super gassed’: Lady Unchained, the prison radio host playing inmates’ raps
The Guardian by Ciaran Thapar May 7, 2024

A spotlight on Free Flow, a popular radio show broadcast on UK National Prison Radio which plays beats and music for incarcerated musicians to practice with. The show's host, Lady Unchained, speaks to offering "advice and tips on how to build a crime-free future using the power of creativity, lyrics, and positivity," and re-energizing prisons through music.

Prison education programs ready to expand, but new Pell Grants slow to arrive
The Hill by Lexi Lonas May 6, 2024

Pell grants for incarcerated students were reapproved by Congress last summer, but the funding has been slow to roll out with only one institution approved so far as an eligible prison education program (PEP).

From Web to Work: How a Tech Ed Program Helps People Prepare to Leave Prison
Prison Journalism Project by Ryan M. Moser April 26, 2024

Brave Behind Bars, MIT's web design program for students who are incarcerated, boosts self-confidence and digital competency.

How a Black Man Went from a 50-year Prison Sentence to Law School
The Root by Kalyn Womack April 17, 2024

Bernard McKinley has become the first graduate of the Northwestern’s Prison Education Program (PEP) to ever be accepted into a law school. He will attend Northwestern Law School as part of the class of 2027.

How to Publish a Magazine in a Maximum-Security Prison
The New Yorker by John J. Lennon April 14, 2024

Journalist John J. Lennon, who is incarcerated in New York, speaks with Wilbert Rideau, an acclaimed prison journalist.

Celebrating Women’s History Month in New Jersey’s Only Prison for Women
Prison Journalism Project by Lucretia Stone March 28, 2024

Lucretia Stone, a writer incarcerated in New Jersey, honors the women who have supported her and those who have supported the other women incarcerated with her.

The unlikely gardeners of Alcatraz island
SFGate by Timothy Karoff March 26, 2024

Insight Garden Program, in collaboration with the National Parks Service, have brought plants cultivated by women incarcerated at Central California Women's Facility to Alcatraz and replanted them on the rock in the hopes of creating a temporary exhibit that will enlighten tourists on the significance of gardens to the lives of those in prison.

How to Escape Prison — Through the Library
Prison Journalism Project by John L. Orr March 25, 2024

John L. Orr, a writer incarcerated in California, reflects on the power of books to provide an escape to new worlds.

The Poet Who Taught in Prison
Prison Journalism Project by Mesro Dhu Rafa'a March 21, 2024

The Book of Judith: Opening Hearts Through Poetry is a tribute to Judith Tannenbaum, who taught poetry in San Quentin State Prison.

What a Day in Prison is Really Like
Vera Institute of Justice by David Sell March 14, 2024

David Sell, a writer incarcerated in the New York state prison system, reflects on a day in prison and why people on the outside should care.

5 Stories About Education in Prison
Prison Journalism Project by Gerard Edic March 5, 2024

5 stories about education in prison to celebrate restored access to Pell Grants for incarcerated students after a 30 year ban.