A call to individuals and foundations to commit at least 1% of net worth or assets towards ending unjust and unnecessary incarceration and criminalization.
This is the civil rights movement of our time, and it's at a tipping point – We need to do our part.
There is more political momentum for justice reform now than at any time in the past 50 years . This chance may not come again in our lifetimes.
In 2020, Americans showed up by the millions to demand a justice system that values Black lives. It was the largest mobilization in American history, and reverberated around the world. In places where organizations and leaders were prepared for the moment, there was progress.
Americans are sick to their stomachs at the level of injustice in our police, jail and prison systems and growing increasingly impatient. The victories of the last 5 years, including a new generation of progressive District Attorneys and the cancellation of multi billion dollar jail projects, show that comparatively small investments can achieve large results -- in some places, we’ve seen over a billion dollars of impact for every million dollars spent.
There are 2.3 million people incarcerated in the United States, and Black Americans represent 38% of the prison population – even though they are 13% of the general population.
We need to act now to back the leaders and the campaigns that are transforming justice around the country.
Police unions, prison guards, private prison companies, and the numerous other actors that benefit from the present system are getting organized and spending millions of dollars to defeat reform policies and reform candidates. These same forces have been vocally aligned with Trump and Trumpism.
There are proven organizations with evidence-based plans that with financial resources can move the needle.
Giving is not proportional to the need or capacity of donors who are already engaged. There's vocal commitment, now it's time for more real commitment.
At a minimum, we need 10-20 high capacity individuals to step up and write eight figure checks by the end of 2021. 1% of net worth is a significant gift, but in context, with the typical family office returning 6% annually and with so much at risk, it should be the new baseline commitment to protecting and expanding justice and equality in our democracy.
The field is at a sweet spot, where it’s still early stage enough that your dollars make a huge difference, but established enough that we can well assess risk. With 5 years of experience making multi million dollar grants to integrated c3 and c4 criminal justice reform strategies, we know the organizations with the track record, the vision, and the plans to win.
These founding pledgers are on a mission to inspire others to take action.
Taking the pledge is the 1st step towards transforming justice together.
We are asking individuals and/or foundations to pledge 1% of all of net worth or assets towards advancing justice.
We've developed effective philanthropic funds to maximize your impact, the One for Justice Action Fund (501c4) and the One for Justice Education Fund (501c3). Our expert advisory board can also provide bespoke recommendations and investment strategies to meet your needs.
All of your giving that aligns with O4J’s mission counts towards your pledge. Many of you may be meeting this 1% threshold already and by joining the pledge, you can inspire others.
If you choose to join the pledge you can opt to have your name shared publicly on the website, or more discreetly with other donors, as inspiration.
Our advisory board made up of Justice funders, strategists, and leaders guides our pledgers in investing as effectively as possible in advancing justice.
The greatest power to transform oppressive criminal legal systems exists at the local level, where elected officials have a huge amount of discretion over enforcement. Over the past 5 years investments to elect the first ever wave of reform prosecutors, sheriffs, and judges have succeed in transforming local justice systems around the country.
There's a narrative battle over who and what constitutes safety. We need to go on the offensive to fight misinformation, frame the failures of law enforcement and the prison system, and inspire all Americans to demand a new vision of justice.
We invest in leaders organizing their communities neighborhood by neighborhood, state by state, building a base for criminal justice reform through campaigns on matters like stopping jail expansion and restoring voting rights.
There are alternatives to police, prisons, and jails! Solutions abound in this space: restorative and transformative justice, violence interruption, trauma recovery centers, local cooperative business models breathing economic life into impoverished neighborhoods, and more are in practice. They need to grow in order to present a nexus of viable alternatives at scale.
While the electoral narrative in organizing work creates political will for change, we must have powerful advocacy campaigns to pass policy that reduce criminalization and improve opportunities to live and work.