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National Mama’s Bail Out Day: Bring A Mom Home For Mother’s Day!


“Money kept them in. Black love got them out.” The week before Mother’s day organizations in Oakland, Los Angeles, St. Petersburg, Montgomery, Memphis, Minneapolis, Durham, Atlanta and beyond will bail out as many mothers as possible who otherwise would spend Mother’s Day in a cell simply because they cannot afford bail.

National Mama’s Bail Out Day will give incarcerated mothers an opportunity to spend Mother’s Day with their families and build community through gatherings that highlight the impact of inhumane and destructive bail practices on our communities!

We will bail out Mother’s in all of our varieties will be bailed out…queer, trans, young, elder, and immigrant. Why? The impact of money bail on our Mamas…

Mama’s Bail Out

Everyday an average of 700,000 people are condemned to cages and separated from their families simply because they cannot afford to pay bail. Since 1980 the number of incarcerated womenhas grown by 700%.

Black women and Trans women are especially vulnerable to incarcerated. Black women are twice as likely as their white counterparts to be jailed. One in five transgender women have spent time in prison or jail and one in three of them reported being sexually assaulted while there.

More than 80% of incarcerated women are mothers and nearly half are in local jails, locked in cages for crimes they have not been convicted of. Most of the women in jail are accused of minordrug and ‘quality of life’ offenses and are languishing in cells simply because they cannot afford to pay bail.

In addition to the over $9 billion wasted to incarcerate people who have been convicted of no crime, pre-trial incarceration has catastrophic impacts on families and communities. Even a few days in jail can ruin a woman’s life. She may lose her job, her family may lose their housing and some even lose their children.

What we can do… We can buy their freedom and push against mass criminalization and modern bondage!

In the tradition of our enslaved Black ancestors, who used their collective resources to purchase each other’s freedom before slavery was abolished, until we abolish bail and mass incarceration, we’re gonna free ourselves.

It is going to take our collective effort to give as many Black mamas their freedom this Mother’s Day, as possible. Now more than ever, we must support our people and dismantle this system that destroys our humanity and breaks up our families.

National Mama’s Bail Out Day is coordinated effort by more than a dozen organizations to reunite families on Mother’s Day and bring attention to the true costs of money bail and mass incarceration. In the tradition of literally buying our people’s freedom, we are setting Black women free from the jaws of incarceration.

In addition to bailing out Black mamas, we are supporting local campaigns to bring an end to this predatory system. In places like Memphis, Atlanta and Durham, organizers who helped create National Mamas Bail Out Day last year, have been working to advance critical policy changes. We’re using this year’s bailouts to free our people and increase the pressure on local officials.

Money should not determine anyone’s freedom. No one should be separated from their loved ones simply because they are too poor to afford bail. We need to abolish the for-profit bail industry. We do that by continuing to highlight the destabilizing impact of the money bail system on Black families. Most importantly, we do that through acts of love and generosity for Black people.

This year, make your Mother’s Day gift count. Bring a mom home for Mother’s Day. Click here for more information or to donate.


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Phyllis Coley
Phyllis D. Coley is CEO/Publisher of Spectacular Magazine and Host of Spectacular Magazine Radio Show. With a B.A. in English from NCCU, the Durham native began her professional career as Promotions/Marketing Director for New York City’s WKTU-FM. While at the radio station, Coley discovered the rap group Kid ‘n Play and managed them for five years, guiding their music and movie careers to success. Moving back to Durham, Coley produced a nationally syndicated television show, The Electric Factory, while working as News Director for FOXY 107/104. In April 2002, recognizing a void in highlighting the achievements of African Americans, she started her own business publishing ACE Magazine. Coley launched Spectacular Magazine in November 2004. Recognizing the lack of pertinent and truthful information, Coley began Spectacular Magazine Radio Show in March 2009. Coley is the organizer of Durham's Annual MLK/Black History Month Parade and the Annual North Carolina Juneteenth Celebration. She currently serves on Central Children’s Home Board of Directors, Raleigh Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Advisors, as Immediate Past Secretary of the Durham Rotary Club Board of Directors and is one of the founding members of the Triangle United Way’s African American Leadership Initiative.

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