DENVER— On May 1, 2018, organizers with the Denver Justice Project (DJP) and Black Lives Matter 5280 (BLM5280) launched BlackBailOut.org and introduced the Black Mamas Bail Out, a bold collaborative effort to free as many Black and Brown Mamas as possible from Denver area jails in time for Mother’s Day 2018.
BlackBailOut.org’s audacious campaign seeks to raise $15,000 in less than two weeks, enough to buy at least 20 women’s freedom by Mother’s Day. Black and brown women are overrepresented in every aspect of the criminal justice system. Eight in ten jailed women are mothers, and many Black women serving pre-trial detention are accused of only minor drug and “public order” offenses that disproportionately target Black people. In fact Black and brown women are the fastest growing population in the criminal justice system.
Eight days into the 13-day fundraiser, DJP/BLM5280’s grassroots effort secured over $11,000 in gifts to the bond fund. Donations are needed urgently to meet and surpass the $15,000 goal. Beginning May 10 and continuing through Mother’s Day May 13, organizers will post cash bonds of $1000 and less to bail out women from Front Range, Colorado jails in Denver, as well as Arapahoe, Adams, Douglas, and Jefferson Counties. Denver’s Black Mamas Bail Out is part of a national movement to end cash bail in the United States. Inspired by the local efforts of Dr. Nita Mosby Tyler and Jeff Fard, who bailed women out of Denver jail in May 2017 for Mother’s Day, DJP and BLM recognize that Black people and abolitionists have been buying freedom for enslaved and jailed women since America’s earliest days. That work continues today. Mamas should not be denied the opportunity to spend Mother’s Day with their families only because they cannot afford bond. By bailing out women who would otherwise spend Mother’s Day in jail only due to inability to pay, DJP and BLM5280 will help reunite incarcerated women with their families and highlight inhumane bail practices. To give to the Black Mamas Bail Out, to recommend a woman in a Denver jail to have her bond posted, to donate post-release resources (e.g. to-go meals, transportation vouchers), to contribute as a legal volunteer, and to learn more about Denver Black Mamas Bail Out, visit: www.blackbailout.org. Learn about national efforts to end cash bail and Mother’s Day Out Bail Out actions nationwide at: www.nationalbailout.org.