Ellen Barry – USA

Linked with Legal Services for Prisoners with Children LSPC.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

… She is Co-Chair of the National Network for Women in Prison, a US-based coalition of organizations and individuals which sponsors national Roundtables for activists and advocates working with women in prison and women who are formerly incarcerated along with Leadership Training Institutes for formerly incarcerated women by and for women who have done time. Ms. Barry currently works as a consultant on Women and Justice issues. She is a founding member of Critical Resistance, a US-based movement which challenges the growth of the prison industrial complex and its detrimental effect on education, health and human services. She is a former member of the California State Bar Section on the Delivery of Legal Services, past co-chair of the State Bar Committee on Legal Services for Prisoners, and a member of the Statewide Commission on Female Inmates and Parolees (SCR 33 Commission which issued a statewide report on women in California prisons, 1992). She has served as lead counsel or co-counsel on over a dozen class action lawsuits challenging conditions of confinement for women prisoners, pregnant and parenting women in prison, pregnant women and pregnant substance dependent women, and women prisoners denied adequate medical care and programming. She has written and spoken extensively on issues affecting women prisoners, their children and family members. In 1997, she received a Soros Senior Justice Fellowship to work on behalf of women prisoners, their children and family members. In 1998, she was awarded a MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship … (full text).

Find her on The NY Times.


Ellen Barry – USA

She works for the Legal Services for Prisoners with Children LSPC,
and for Critical Resistance prison abolition movement.

She says: “I believe that many people are starting to realize that we’ve made some deep, deep mistakes by building prisons to the detriment and exclusion of building up our educational systems”. (1000peacewomen).

Ask Ellen Barry about herself and she’ll invariably tell you about someone else. The celebrated San Francisco-based advocate for women in prison isn’t exactly shy, but she’d much rather talk about her clients. For instance, there’s the story of Delores, a former heroin user who sought to turn her life around a few years ago after learning she was pregnant with her third child. Delores signed up for a drug recovery program and turned herself in for a probation violation … (UTNE Reader).

She says also:  … “I have so much admiration for people who face tremendous odds, who go through a journey to hell and come back” … (on BetterWorldHeroe).

Ellen Barry is a prison rights activist, lawyer, and organizer who speaks out about the crucial issues facing women in US jails and prisons. Ellen founded the Legal Services for Prisoners with Children LSPC and is a central figure in the Critical Resistance prison abolition movement. She has devoted much of her life to challenging the rapidly expanding prison system in the USA; with more than two million prisoners, it is the largest in the world. She has exposed the darkest prison abuses and has helped bring about significant, hard-won improvements to the California state prison system. (1000peacewomen).

And she says: … “We’ve entered a disturbing period that promotes a retributionist, punitive attitude toward people in our society who haven’t ‘made it,’ who are underdogs, who don’t have the financial means that other people have, and who may have disabilities like mental illness and addictions to deal with” … (on BetterWorldHeroe).

Disambiguates many persons named Ellen Barry (but our peacewomen is not in the list).


Uni Hamburg: … on abolition;


ZNet: Notebook of a Prison Abolitionist;

Radical alternatives to prison;

Howard League for penal reform;

Article calling for abolition of prisons by conservative author Gary North;

IWW General Defense Committee;

Access to justice a basic right;

Public Interest Law Institute, Indigent Defense Systems in the United States;

Prison Statistics, on June 30, 2007;

Dept to Society;

The category penology on wikipedia.

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