October 2, 2016

Between the Bars: How Jails Fail – One Woman’s Journey

Our service today was organized by our Social Justice Committee.

Meghann Perry was brought up as a Methodist in a middle class family. She went to school, played soccer, graduated a year early, went on to college and studied in Europe. She graduated college with a bachelor of science and an addiction. After graduating, she worked on getting herself clean, but was identified by the DEA and pressured to give up names or be charged with a felony. She opted to go to jail. She was 5-months pregnant at the time.

She shares her experience with addiction and incarceration to help people better understand these issues and to fight for change in the system so that others like her can get the help and support they need instead of being criminalized. Today, Meghann is a Recovery Coach, helping other women achieve long term recovery.

Claire Barker is a member of Theodore Parker UU Church in West Roxbury. She is a 15-year member of Partakers, which supports prisoners getting college degrees behind bars, a co-convener of her church's Racial Justice Task Force, and an activist for corrections systems reform.  She is here today with Meghann to represent EMIT - Ending Mass Incarceration Together, a task force of the UU Mass Action Network.

The recording begins as Meghann is recounting the current situation with regard to incarceration in our country.