“After Prison” is a zine and website project aimed at sharing the voices of former earth and animal defense prisoners. This project hopes to help build an understanding of what life after prison can entail, so that individuals and communities can help create healthier environments for prisoners to return home to. It also provides an opportunity for former and current prisoners – whom often have restrictions on who they can communicate with – to connect with the experiences of others.
“It’s been 20 years since I first entered a federal prison. Fortunate for me, only six of those years were lost to that traumatizing experience, but the damage will last the rest of my life, and if I’m not careful, maybe the lives of my children too. When you’re in prison, it is difficult to say the least, to stay connected to your former “outside” world. However strong your connection might have been, those are not the type of people you are around now and it is not the world you are living in or that threatens your very own ability to live. Just as society forces us to disconnect from the violence caused by our way of life, prison forced us to disconnect from a lot of our deepest sense of self and stay there for years.”
– Rod Coronado, former earth & animal liberation prisoner, from his article, “What Your Heart Tells You Is Right.”
Many former prisoners face a raft of difficulties upon coming out of prison, such as housing & employment discrimination, dealing with trauma, and the stigma of being a felon, to name just a few. It is crucial that our communities can support our fellow activists through these often challenging times. But it is important to listen to the voices of those who have had these experiences, to learn what is appropriate support, and simply learn to listen.
The zine, featuring interviews and writings from former earth & animal defense prisoners such as Rod Coronado, Jordan Halliday, Josh Harper & Jeff Luers, is being launched today on June 11, the International Day of Solidarity with Marie Mason, Eric McDavid & all Eco-prisoners. We hope that it contributes to further discussion around supporting those currently in prison, as well as when they are released.
The zine can be read online, and downloaded from the website: afterprisonzine.org.
All former and current movement prisoners can request a hardcopy of the zine for free. Please get in touch if you, or a prisoner you are supporting, would like a copy.
This is an ongoing project. In the long term, we are hoping that the website set up for this zine will become a place where other former prisoners will be interested in contributing their stories. As the website receives more contributions, further updated editions of the zine will be produced.