Nothing makes all of us at CAN-DO happier than the moment when we learn someone we advocated for is given the greatest news of their life – that they are “going home.” People like Dicky “Joe” Jackson, who was #5 on the CAN-DO Top 25 men. Even more exciting are the phone calls we receive post-release, which incite cheers, screams and tears of joy. But we don’t very often participate in projects that involve Oscar winning actors, such as Tim Robbins, who portrays Joe Jackson in the following video. The #MySentence video series was created to raise the discussion about former prisoners whose unjust sentences have been commuted by President Obama. To inspire criminal justice reform, celebrities were asked to read first-person testimonials from former prisoners about their struggles and accomplishments. The production team includes director Shruti Ganguly, producer Neil Gladstone, producer Raeshem Nijhon and associate producer Tracey Baker-Simmons.
The artists appearing in the series are Tim Robbins, Monica, Ludacris, Pusha T and Gabourey Sibide.
Gabourey Sibide reads the story of Ramona Brant, who was #4 on the CAN-DO Top 25 Women. Ramona and CAN-DO Founder Amy Povah have emailed since 2009 and CAN-DO was instrumental in garnering media exposure for Ramona, a survivor of domestic violence.
CAN-DO prison outreach coordinator, Malik King provided names of candidates for the #MySentence project, including Telisa Watkins, as told by Monica.
Pusha T tells the story of Norman Brown