New Years News

Let’s Get Free is pushing off the new year with a flurry of heartfelt activity. Excitement is brewing because we have secured a date for our annual prison justice art fundraiser (October) and our dear friends from Philadelphia are coming to lead a training on self governance. That’s right! Reconstruction Inc. will be here the 3rd weekend of March to share their Capacity Building Curriculum, and you are invited!

We continue to confront laws and policies upholding Death by Incarceration sentences, with our participation in CADBI-West. We have been channeling love in the form of visits, letters, phone calls, books, financial and commutation application support to not just the women at Cambridge Springs but many people serving life sentences.

We are bursting with ideas and an overwhelming workload – perhaps you are ready to get more involved? Next meeting this Wednesday Feb 20th @ 6:30pm at the TMC Annex 5119 Penn ave! You coming?

Read on dear ones for news, updates and ways to participate.


Support Pittsburgh’s New Bail Fund!
The Bukit Bail Fund of Pittsburgh is doing its first set of BAILOUTS over the week of Valentine’s Day!

To celebrate this righteous return of people to their communities, you are invited to join on February 14, 2019 for a celebration of love and freedom with dinner, conversation, performances by radical artists, and more!

This secret café pop-up restaurant will begin serving dinner at 6:45, with a short menu made to satisfying all (vegans/carnivores/gf/nut free)

There is no cost for this event, though donation jars will be present for those who feel called to contribute.

~Why do we need a community bail fund in Pittsburgh?~

81% of inmates at ACJ have not been convicted of a crime. They are only being held because they cannot afford to post bail before their trial. Their freedom cannot wait. Black people and other People of Color end up behind bars more than anyone else — Black people get incarcerated at more than five times the rate of white people. People needlessly suffer and often even die in jail while waiting on their hearings, especially if they are POC, trans, disabled, or poor. In 2017, four people died at ACJ due to medical neglect, and historically such deaths occur within the first few days of someone’s arrival.

Join this new exciting group on this day of action in memory of Frank “Bukit” Smart, Jr. and everyone else who has lost their life to the neglect and active abuse of the ACJ. In solidarity with all their families, friends, and loved ones, let’s spread the #LoveBeyondBars!

For more info on Bukit’s story, please visit the Facebook page: Bukit Bail Fund


Call for Artists

Our 3rd annual prison justice art fundraiser is set for October of 2019. Calling all artists on both sides of the walls to create pieces on the theme –  “Glow Home:
Illuminating relationSHIPS

What does HOME look like? Feel like? A space? A state of mind? how do you glow there?

How would you draw, paint sculpt your dream home? If you are incarcerated, what are your hopes, dreams, fears about coming home?

So many of us had fun creating lamps and light boxes at last years show we wanted to extend that theme. Spruce up a lamp shade or string of lights.

Another angle is that of relationSHIPS. We believe relationships are really what makes coming home GLOW. Think of all the ships:)  relationSHIP. friendSHIP, companionSHIP, hardSHIP, worSHIP, partnerSHIP, citizenSHIP, leaderSHIP -it is a fundraiser. People love ships. loveSHIPs.

Please submit your art by July 31 2019.

As always, we accept old art that wasn’t made specifically for this show. Additionally, if anyone is still inspired to make art out of letters from people in prison please do!

Do you know an incarcerated artist? Share their contact with us so we can send them the call to artists.

Questions, encouragement or need some letters from people in prison?  Contact etta cetera: letsgetfreepa@gmail.com – 443-603-6964


Capacity Building Curriculum
-a training for self governance and group sustainability-
March 23 & 24 (Saturday and Sunday)
Details to be decided: Save the Date!

Please join Reconstruction Inc. in collaboration with Let’s Get Free in a two day training & learning from the Capacity Building Curriculum.

Reconstruction Inc. is a grassroots organization based in Philadelphia whose purpose is to affect social change by forging individuals that were formerly incarcerated into an organized community of leaders working together to transform the criminal justice system, their communities and themselves. This curriculum has been developed over many years of direct implementation with groups in Philadelphia and recently at the State Correctional Institution-Muncy. It is important to note that the curriculum is not only for people impacted by the criminal injustice system, but for everyone.

Reconstruction Inc. believes that each human being is sacred and is valuable to themselves, their family, the community and to society. Each of us should be critical thinkers, good decision makers, and give principled leadership to our family and eventually change the world. This curriculum has three pillars, and is both interactive and transformative.


Please watch this new 18 minute documentary produced by Real Stories featuring women in prison at SCI-Muncy. It’s called Dying Outloud.

This film features Diane Metzger who passed away this month in prison. We send our deepest condolences out to her family both in and outside of prison. Diane was 69 years old at the time of her death. Her crime, not turning in her husband who killed his ex-wife, is explained in the video. In 1989 Diane received approval from the Board of Pardons for a commutation of her life sentence, but was then denied by Governor Bob Casey.

All women featured in the documentary did not commit the murders they are serving life sentences for. They were in the car, the other room, took a plea, etc. Below are two quotes by professionals attempting to understand why the system comes down harder on women than men.  (Please pardon the binary)

“There is more tolerance for male violence than there is for female violence because female violence is so rare.” – Brian O’Neil, criminologist

“There is a long standing assumption that men commit crime because they are bad or in economic need. For women, the idea that women would commit a crime is a violation of their feminine nature … that they are deviant by virtue for violating a larger cultural norm about femininity.”
–Dr. Jill McCorkel, PHD


Ricky Olds founder of Let’s Get Free’s new program, The Real Deal on Reentry, spoke as a part of Law & Disorder panel at the Pittsburgh Racial Justice Summit on January 25, 2019. The Real Deal is a budding  program supporting returning citizens. The program is organically occurring on the streets of downtown Pittsburgh, on buses across the city and through the prison walls. Ricky has been offering emotional and financial support for fellow returning citizens as well as to his brothers on the inside. To learn more about Ricky’s story

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