We aim to change the attitudes of society and its perception towards the reality of prison life by raising awareness.
We work with students, criminal justice professionals, the media, and members of the public – influencing debate and attempting to foster change in attitudes and policy.
We encourage members to join volunteering programmes and fundraise for charities that tackle all aspects of prison life, whether that’s within the community, within prison itself or post-prison.
What do we do?
Educate: We aim to change the attitudes of society and its perception towards the reality of prison life by raising awareness and exploring alternatives. We host talks with criminal justice professionals, academics and activists working to change the criminal justice system. We have recently started a student-led blog series where people can write, read and learn about specific elements of the prison industrial complex in the UK and internationally. Our newly published website also contains a hand-picked podcast bank to listen to.
Campaign: We lobby the university, the council and the government to give those in prison a fair chance and foster rehabilitative and social welfare programmes as well as stop the expansion of the prison estate and reduce the number of people isolated from society in prisons.
Support: We encourage members to join volunteering programmes and fundraise for charities that tackle all aspects of prison life, whether that’s within the community, within prison itself or post-prison.
What have we done?
Since our formation in October 2016, our members have developed and organised several successful events some of which include:
Prison Christmas Card Campaign 2016; over 1200 Christmas cards sent to the inmates of HMP Leeds.
Our popular Doughnut & Discussion meetups
Restorative Solutions talk about restorative justice
A Second Chance documentary viewing at The Hyde Park Picture House
Tempus Novo talk about helping ex-offenders find employment
Ban The Box Campaign: successfully lobbying LUU to remove the tick box on job applications for past convictions
Psychology and Prisons talk
Pub Quiz at LS6 Cafe
How do you join?
It’s simple and FREE! Just click ‘join us’ to become an active member. We don’t have a membership fee because we really want you to get involved and help create a successful society by making it as accessible as possible.
What will being a member mean?
Being a member brings you into our community of like-minded people and allows to get involved but you can commit as much of your time to events, campaigns as you like, there is no pressure to come every week!
Attend weekly meetings which involve: planning/discussions/a talk/ film screening
Write blog posts for our website
Get to know criminal justice organisations and graduate schemes offering potential career paths
Recommend books, podcasts, articles, speakers you think might be relevant to the society
We are hoping to start a book club!
Our hopes for next year?
We are online! Our new website for Prison Reform Society includes articles on the latest criminal justice news, reflection pieces, book and documentary reviews and an extensive podcast bank. Our main campaign currently is to fight against the building of new mega prison HMP Full Sutton outside York. We will continue to run online talks and events and create new ways for you to get involved in campaigns online.
What if my course doesn't relate?
Yes, and it is encouraged! The issue of prison reform can be made relevant to all courses in some way, whether its the arts, economics or history. The society is not directly linked to any specific course or school. This is to ensure that all ways of thinking are accommodated for and a variety of opinions are considered from a wide range of backgrounds.
Contact us at email@example.com