In Spring 2019, Michigan Liberation organized to free 15 Black Mothers from what they describe as cages in the state jail systems.
These were women who were jailed and unable to have money for bail—also referred to as wealth-based pretrial detention, according to their website.
Michigan Liberation, a nonprofit organization, is a statewide network of people and organizations banding together to end the criminalization of Black families and communities of color in Michigan, their website stated. They “envision a state without mass incarceration or mass policing.”
In 2020, as they continued to organize to free more Black Mothers from the criminal legal system, they were “devastated” by the conditions people were forced to be in during the COVID-19 pandemic. They focused their bailout efforts on a COVID-19 rapid response bailout and were able to bailout 32 people across Michigan.
Interested participants can join them as they spread their wings even more through the launch of their 2021 Black Mamas Bailout Campaign. The goal is to raise $50,000 to even further their mission of getting more mothers out of the jail system. One hundred percent of funds raised on this page will go toward this project.
This is the third year of the campaign and the organization has learned that there is often more involved in “getting womxn released” than simply showing up at the jail with their set bail amount.
“There may be fines to pay before release, and if a tether is required, the cost to have it put on and monitored falls to the individual. Transportation home may also be an issue,” per the release.
“Our action and community organizing highlighted the role of profiteers in the bail bonds industry, exposed the massive underlying social inequities leading to contact with the legal system, and inspired community action,” according to their website. “What started as a bailout has evolved into a quest for transformational change across the criminal legal system in Michigan and a commitment to making it happen.”
In the community with the work of the National Bail Out, their teams were able to secure the release of Black mothers in three counties: Wayne, Oakland, and Kalamazoo.
“You can support our call to action by making a contribution that will be used to pay the bail, fines, and fee’s of Black Mama’s, Black women, gender nonconforming people and fem(me)s and bring them home to their family for Mother’s Day,” according to the press release.
Quotes are plastered all throughout the group’s Facebook page as they share motivational sayings about never stopping the good work of freeing Black mothers.
“We will never stop fighting for Black women,” Pat Hussain, co-founder of Song read a quote on their Facebook posts.
Another equally inspiring one read: “Money kept them in, Black love got them out.”
Community Partners include Out 4 Life Re-entry, Greater Detroit Democratic Socialists of America, Church of the Messiah, Detroit Justice Center, We the People, Michigan Liberation, Detroit Bail Project, Engage Michigan, Redeeming Kimberly, Advancement Project.
For more information or to donate find them on Facebook at Michigan Black Mama’s Bail Out.