Monday, March 1 is Death Penalty Abolition Day. On March 1, 1847, Michigan became the first territory in North America to abolish the death penalty. We will to mark this occasion with a panel featuring Rev. Sharon Risher, whose mother, two cousins and friend were murdered by Dylan Roof in the Charleston church massacre. More speakers will be announced soon and registration information can be found below.
March 1 also marks the 40th day of the Biden administration. We want to end federal executions in his first 100 days and we’re nearly at the halfway mark. We’re activating our nationwide network of partners to start organizing their members and writing to Congress (by the way — have you written to Congress?).
Forty days into the first 100 days of the Biden Administration, Death Penalty Action and a coalition of more than 250 organizations are calling on Congress to abolish the federal and military death penalty. Death Penalty Action will launch an invigorated second phase of its campaign with a virtual event at 11am EST on Monday, March 1, 2021.
The event will feature Rev. Sharon Risher, whose mother, Mrs. Ethel Lee Lance, as well as two cousins and a childhood friend, were among nine church members killed by a white supremacist terrorist at the Mother Emanuel AME Church on June 17th, 2015. Dylan Roof awaits execution on the federal death row at Terre Haute, Indiana. Rev. Risher will speak about her experiences and her conclusion that the death penalty is not the response that murder victim families and other co-victims need.
Among those also participating: Lisa Brown, mother of Christopher Vialva, who was executed in Terre Haute in September as part of the Trump Administration’s killing spree. Check this link to help Lisa raise funds for a proper headstone for her son.
Save the Date! Our board chair, Shane Claiborne, will be a host a faith forum on the death penalty on March 10 at 8 PM EST. The forum, sponsored by Red Letter Christians, will feature Ohio death row exoneree Derrick Jamison and victim family advocate SueZann Bosler.
So, you’ve decided to help out your favorite nonprofit by raising funds on your Facebook page? Thank you! Here’s a quick and inspirational set of steps to maximize your fundraising efforts.
- Set up your fundraiser:
- Make a small donation yourself
- Share your fundraiser again on your page with a short sentence or two about why fighting the death penalty is important to you.
- Choose 10 people you actually know — whether or not you think they support the cause or have money — and send it to them in a direct message, asking them to help you meet your goal by donating.
- Once you get to 10%, use the “invite friends” function to share it with every one of your friends.
- Thank every donor with a heart and a comment, personalized if possible.
- Every milestone round number (% or whatever) repost with, “We’re 20% there! Who’s next?!)
- If you are approaching your initial goal and you still have at least a day or two left in your allotted time, consider increasingusing your goal, and/or extending your deadline.
Thank you so, so much for investing in our work!
Out on March 1! Emil Ekvardt from Great.com interviewed Death Penalty Action as part of their ‘Great.com Talks With…’ podcast. This series is an antidote to negative news stories that aims to shed light on organizations and experts whose work is making a positive impact on the world. Goes live on March 1st!
Cathy Crino recently retired from her career of over forty years in teaching and parish ministry, mostly in Chicago. She was always opposed to the death penalty, but was tested in 1995 when her sister, Stephanie, was murdered in El Paso, Texas. “When you are faced with the bloody evidence of the murder of someone you love, you know on a level deeper than words that the death penalty would not serve to heal the pain or repair the damage.” In 2011, Illinois abolished the death penalty, a campaign on which Crino worked for several years, traveling around the state, speaking, and educating constituents about the failures of capital punishment in meeting the needs of victim family members. She continues that work with Death Penalty Action.
Ahmad Issa survived 22 years on Ohio’s death row for a crime he did not commit. Learn more and help him resume his life here.
Wear the message!
Protect yourself and others in style — click here to check out our masks, t-shirts, buttons and other ways to wear the message with AbolitionWear!
- Virginia lawmakers vote to abolish the death penalty
- In Wyoming, some opposition to death penalty coming from families of victims
- Sentenced to death, but innocent: These are stories of justice gone wrong.
- Justice Breyer Reprises Death Penalty Critique Following Federal Execution Spree
- Witnessing Executions
Please chip-in any amount so we can abolish the federal death penalty in 2021!
If you prefer to donate with a check, our address is: PO Box 89, Ghent, NY 12075.