Rolling Stone"Brian, a longtime activist [with UJC’s Freedom Agenda] who served a year in New York’s Rikers Island in 2006 and then two shorter stints years later for parole violations, says he is 17 months sober thanks to 12-step programs. “You’re not gonna keep drugs out of anywhere,” he says. “Instead of spending all that time and resources, they’d be way better spent and more effective put into education programs, self-help programs, 12-step programs. That’s what’s gonna get people off drugs.”
The Paper“We stand with the GANGS Coalition to end this gang database this year,” Darren Mack, co-founder, and co-director of the Urban Justice Center’s Freedom Agenda said to the crowd at Brooklyn Borough Hall. “After that, we want all those resources that the NYPD utilized to operate that system to go back into our community.”
Mott Haven HeraldDarren Mack, Freedom Agenda spokesperson, whose organization advocates the closure of the jail, and who was formerly incarcerated on Rikers Island, said “the problem is there’s this chronic absenteeism.”
La Politica OnlineEste plan no es suficiente para Edwin Santana, organizador comunitario del movimiento Freedom Agenda. Santana ejerciendo de maestro de ceremonias en una multitudinaria protesta frente al gobierno municipal, lanzó un mensaje claro para el alcalde Adams: "Ni arreglar ni reformar Rikers, la cárcel hay que cerrarla ya!"
Climate CheckIn this episode, Eva talks with Darren Mack, a co-founder of Freedom Agenda and a survivor of Rikers. They discuss the historic Renewable Rikers bills, Mack’s foray in activism, and how environmentalism and decarceration are intertwined.
NY1 Noticias"La verdadera seguridad pública radica en recursos para nuestras comunidades, porque constantemente encarcelamos a las personas más vulnerables con problemas de salud mental, adicción a las drogas, pobreza", dijo Ashley Conrad, coordinadora de Comunidad Freedom Agenda.
WNYC Studios"Eighteen people jailed at Rikers Island have died this year, the most since 2013. Darren Mack, co-director of the Urban Justice Center's Freedom Agenda, a member-led project organizing communities impacted by incarceration, joins us to discuss the continuing crisis, the activist response and the latest on efforts to close Rikers."
NY Amsterdam News“2022 has become one of the deadliest years in the history of NYC Department of Corrections,” said [UJC's] Freedom Agenda co-director Darren Mack. “The dysfunction, chronic staff absenteeism, and lack of accountability has intensified. Advocates have been sounding the alarm and calling for urgent action from the City.”
NYCity News"Edwin Santana, community organizer with the Urban Justice Center and a formerly incarcerated person who had been held on Rikers, led the demonstration along with Victoria Phillips, co-chair of the NYC Department of Correction Young Adult Task Force [and an organizer with UJC's Mental Health Project]."
AMNY"Members of the [UJC organized] Jails Action Coalition, #HALTsolitary Campaign, Freedom Agenda [of the Urban Justice Center], VOCAL-NY, and more set out faux body bags along with the names of those who have perished while imprisoned. Organizers claimed that about 1,000 inmates on the penal island suffer from mental illness, making the DOC facility a caretaker for mental health."