Fellow Presents on Aging Behind Bars

Alyssa Gordon, a Borchard Fellow hosted by the ACLU National Prison Project, is a guest panelist with Aging Behind Bars a special discussion hosted by the Consulate General of Canada in New York. Here is information provided by the Consulate:

Over the last 30 years, the number of aging and elderly people incarcerated in the United States has grown fivefold. The segment of incarcerated people aged 55 and older is one of the fastest growing groups in prison, and the costs of incarcerating the sick and elderly is high. But what does it really mean when we talk about the greying of the US prison population, and what does it mean to grow old behind bars? What options do consular officials have to help our nationals in this situation? In America, at both the state and federal levels, there are legal processes that allow eligible inmates to be considered for early release on humanitarian grounds. The criteria can include age and illness, among other considerations. This type of sentencing reduction has many names – compassionate release, medical parole or furlough, exceptional parole to name a few. But how does someone access these processes? How does compassionate release work here for non-US citizens?

Join Canada’s Consular Services at a panel discussion hosted at the Consulate General of Canada in New York on March 21st from 2:00 pm EST to 3:30 PM EST to hear from legal and academic experts on the impacts of aging in prison, and gain a deeper understanding of the legislative and administrative environment around compassionate release. This conversation aims to help consular officials learn about the effects of aging in prison in the USA, how compassionate release works in different jurisdictions and how it can impact foreign nationals. Connect with organizations and other consular officials to strengthen partnerships, develop procedures and identify resources for your consular clients.

Featuring guest speakers:

o  Elizabeth Blackwood – Counsel & Director of the First Step Act, National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys

o  Alyssa K. Gordon – Borchard Fellow in Law and Aging, American Civil Liberties Union National Prison Project

o  Dr. Shivani Kaushik – Assistant Professor, School of Social Work, Florida International University

o  Mary Price – General Counsel, FAMM

o  Rita Vargas Torregrosa – Deputy Consul General, Consulate General of Mexico in New York

Moderated By:

Sabrina Yoong

Consul for Canadian Citizen Services, Emergency Management & Security

Consulate General of Canada in New York

To register for this event, go to: