What do successful alternatives to policing, prosecution and prison actually look like? And how would they work? A group of Chicago’s leading public safety, health and justice innovators gathered at the DePaul Art Museum last summer to provide much-needed clarity on these crucial questions.
Artists, survivors of violence, entrepreneurs and business leaders, public defenders, policy experts, restorative justice practitioners, and system-impacted people sat down for a series of conversations while exploring Remaking the Exceptional, a groundbreaking exhibition on torture and incarceration.
The conversations expose common myths about crime and punishment and explain a range of critical issues and innovations, including restorative justice, violence interruption, copaganda, pretrial detention and the criminalization of trauma survivors, among others.
The following short film — the final in a series named after the exhibition and produced by Zealous, Truthout and Teen Vogue — focuses on the criminalization of trauma survivors. It explains the cycle of violence and how people who cause harm are often survivors of violence themselves; how the criminal legal system further traumatizes survivors; and why noncarceral alternatives are necessary to break this cycle.
The film features health advocate and entrepreneur Tanya Lozano; Takenya Nixon from the Cook County Public Defender’s Office; entrepreneur and trauma specialist Johnny Page; advocate and policy expert Briana Payton from the Chicago Appleseed Center for Fair Courts; and Love & Protect member Chez Rumpf.
Read more on the criminalization of trauma survivors from Teen Vogue and Truthout.
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