Free The People WNY



Coalition Structure

The purpose of the coalition is to provide support to the work already being done by organizers. This support looks like sharing information, making connections, boosting and co-sponsoring events, hosting workshops, conferences and trainings, raising awareness of campaigns, connecting organizers with elected officials, and creating and uniting behind shared policy platforms.

The current structure of the coalition consists of 3 working groups: City, County and State.
This is where organizers working on campaigns at each level combine efforts and support each other. This is where the “meat” of the work is done. Each working group makes their own strategy decisions about the issues they are working on. Various people currently fill different roles related to research, communications, and group support/healing. 

Check Out What The Working Groups Are Up To

Asset 1


Buffalo, NY Working Group



Erie County Working Group


New York State Working Group

Coalition Membership

Our mission statement and principles outline the shared worldview that organizations align with in order to be official members of the coalition. The coalition is primarily composed of organizations actively working on ending mass incarceration, or organizations providing direct support to people who have been impacted by the system. Individuals are welcome to participate with the coalition in different capacities, but can’t sign on as official members. Any organization (formal or informal) that fits with the first two criteria is welcome to sign-on as a coalition member. Signing on as an official member is optional, organizations who don’t want to be listed publicly as partners can still fully participate in any way they choose.

Decision-making Processes

Decisions that affect the whole coalition are made at monthly general meetings by a majority of those in attendance. Decisions that relate to a working group (City, County, and State policies) are made by that working group. The work is guided by the policy platform which is updated on a rolling basis by the working groups. The policy platform will be organized by level (City, County or State).