Resources: Nationwide Organizations and Resources

PARC corresponds with and mails a directory of these resources to prisoners, their friends and family members. We are often the first point of contact for people to connect with prisoners' rights organizations, community organizations, prison literature and arts projects, family and visiting resources, health care and legal resources, parole and pre-release resources, and the prison abolition movement.

Download a PDF copy of the 2022 edition linked here.

Resource Category
Adopt An Inmate

Nonprofit volunteer organization that connects outside volunteers with prisoners seeking mentors, support and friendship. (We are neither a dating service, nor lawyers, please do not send your legal documents). Our website is a comprehensive source of tools and resources to advocate for inmates. Stories are welcome, as well as poems, artwork, and book reviews by inmates. We are advocates for publication on our website (indicate submission type on outside of envelope). Send your request for a survey with a short bio (1-3 paragraphs) and include a pre-addressed, stamped envelope when possible. To follow up on an existing request, indicate "follow-up" on outside of envelope.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
AFSC Prison Watch Project

Publishes Survivors Manual: Surviving in Solitary, by Bonnie Kerness (2012, 94 pages), free to prisoners and $3 for all others. The book is a powerful collection of voices from solitary, as people currently or formerly held in isolation vividly describe their conditions and their daily lives. The collection also includes artwork and poetry. Also available is a free 6-page brochure entitled LGBTQ+ Prisoner Resource Guide (2017). Serves people nationwide.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
All of Us or None

All of Us or None is a grassroots organizing project of Legal Services for Prisoners with Children. All of Us or None fights for the full restoration of our civil and human rights of formerly-and currently-incarcerated people and families. They are fighting against the discrimination that people face every day because of arrest or conviction history. The goal of All of Us or None is to strengthen the voices of people most affected by mass incarceration and the growth of the prison-industrial complex.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Amnesty International

Compiles information about prisoner torture, beatings, rape, etc. to include in reports about U.S. prison conditions; also works on police accountability and ending the death penalty. May not respond to individual letters.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Center for Constitutional Rights

Non-profit legal and educational organization committed to the creative use of law as a positive force for social change and dedicated to advancing and protecting constitutional rights. CCR recently litigated the Ashker v Governor challenge to solitary confinement in CA. Publishes Jailhouse Lawyers Handbook with National Lawyers Guild. See PARC RECOMMENDED BOOKS at the end of this Directory for more info.  Last updated in 2021.  To receive a paperbound copy, mail a request to the above address and wait at least 2 months for return.  Download chapter, or get an order form to request a Handbook at https://www.jailhouselaw.org/


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Citizens United for Rehabilitation of Errants (CURE)

CURE organizes prisoners, their families and other concerned citizens to achieve reforms in the criminal-justice system, and has a presence in 24 states. Write for complete listing or addresses of state chapters. Serves people nationally.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Coalition for Prisoners’ Rights Newsletter

Publishes a monthly newsletter with news about prisoners nationwide and is free to prisoners who send an SASE. They also have a variety of prisoner resource lists available. Back issues from 2009 are online.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Critical Resistance

CR seeks to build an international movement to end the Prison Industrial Complex by challenging the belief that caging and controlling people makes everyone safe. CR also publishes “The Abolitionist," once a year, printed in both English and Spanish, which is free to prisoners. Previous editions of The Abolitionist are available online at: https://abolitionistpaper.wordpress.com/.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Families Against Mandatory Minimums

Nonprofit organization fighting for fair and proportionate sentencing laws that allow judicial discretion; improved prison conditions; and an increase in compassionate release. May not respond to letters.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Helping Educate to Advance the Rights of the Deaf (HEARD)

All volunteer organization that provides advocacy services for deaf, hard of hearing and deaf-blind inmates across the nation. HEARD’s mission is to promote equal access to the justice and legal system for deaf defendants, detainees, prisoners, and returned citizens. HEARD created and maintains the only national database of deaf and deaf-blind prisoners and is the only organization that focuses on correcting and preventing wrongful conviction of deaf people. May not respond quickly to letters. Nationwide.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Just Detention International

JDI is a health and human rights organization that seeks to end sexual abuse and exploitation in all forms of detention. It publishes a Resource Guide listing service providers in all 50 states that can help incarcerated survivors, as well as a Survivor Packet, which includes Hope for Healing, with contact information for local rape crisis centers and legal aid organizations; and a letter of hope from another prisoner rape survivor. Prisoners may communicate confidentially with JDI using legal mail at the above address. Serves people nationally.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Lewisburg Prison Project

The Lewisburg Prison Project (LPP) is affiliated with the PA Institutional Law Project (PILP). Together, we provide informational materials, advice, and representation on civil rights matters related to the conditions of confinement (medical, mental health, excessive force, etc.) of those incarcerated in Pennsylvania. We cannot provide legal advice or representation to those with claims that occur outside of Pennsylvania, and we do not assist with criminal matters, habeas cases, sentencing, or parole issues. Also provides informational materials and legal bulletins about prisoners' rights to people incarcerated throughout the United States. Resources available online, or write in for order form and to submit requests. Legal advice only provided in Pennsylvania; other resources nationwide.



Nationwide Organizations and Resources
National Center on Institutions and Alternatives

Provides sentencing advocacy, capital case mitigation services, parole release advocacy, institutional designation and transfer, and release planning. Will research questions and provide advice regarding the Bureau of Prisons, the administrative remedy process, intensive confinement, RDAP, pre-release programming, home confinement and related issues. Serves federal prisoners nationwide.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty

National advocacy organization with research and information about death penalty use in each state. Does not offer legal resources. May not respond to individual letters.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources, Death Penalty Resources
National Resource Center on Children and Families of the Incarcerated

NRCCFI is the oldest and largest organization in the U.S. focused on children and families of the incarcerated and programs that serve them.  Has a library of resources downloadable from its website; publishes fact sheets and a directory listing programs in the United States and around the world that offer services specifically for children and families of the incarcerated.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Prison Library Support Network (PLSN)

Need information or trying to do research? Let PLSN be your human search engines. Send us your information and research-related questions and we will mail you pages about anything you ask us to look up. Can help find info about community resources; articles from newspapers, magazines, or academic journals; and material published online on topics you're trying to learn more about. Can NOT help with things that go against facility mail room policies, penpal requests, or legal advice.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Prisoner Visitation and Support

Prisoner Visitation and Support (PVS) is a volunteer visitation program for federal and military prisoners across the U.S., with special priority given to those on death row, in solitary confinement, serving long sentences, or not receiving regular visits.  PVS volunteers visit once a month, with no religious or political agenda, to provide a listening ear to those who need one.  Limited visiting for Spanish speaking prisoners. Serves federal and military prisoners only. 


 

 


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Root & Rebound

Mostly focused on services for released Californians in reentry, but has a number of publications to plan for reentry, including the 100 page Reentry PlanningToolkits. The toolkit is not intended to give legal advice, but rather general legal information about people’s rights in reentry.  Also publishes a 1211 page manual, the Roadmap to Reentry legal guide. Now also has developed resources in Minnesota, Hawai'i and Connecticut, and have pending projects in South Carolina. Serves mostly Californians.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Solitary Watch

Solitary Watch works to expose and oppose the use of solitary confinement in U.S. prisons and jails, and offers a free quarterly newsletter to prisoners. Solitary Watch also welcomes submissions of writing by those currently or formerly serving time in solitary. In Sept. 2017, published an anthology called Hell is a Very Small Place, although it does not sell the book directly. May not respond timely to letters. Serves people nationally.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
The Sentencing Project

The Sentencing Project is a national policy research and advocacy organization that works for a fair and effective criminal justice system by promoting sentencing reform and alternatives to incarceration. They produce reports on prison-related topics, including prison populations nationally,  state-by-state data, life sentences, voting rights, and more. May not respond to letters.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Transgender, Gender Variant, and Intersex (TGI) Justice Project

The TGI Justice Project works primarily with transgender prisoners and formerly incarcerated transgender people in California, and sends out their “Stiletto Prison Newsletter” and their very informative 72-page “Still We Rise-Prison Resource Guide” to all TGI prisoners. TGI also supports TGI prisoners being released to the San Francisco Bay Area, and are part of a broader movement fighting for racial and social justice. Some services nationwide but more services for Californians. Expect delays in response to letters.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources, LGBTQI-focused Organizations and Resources
Vegetarian Resource Group

The Vegetarian Resource Group is a non-profit organization dedicated to educating the public on vegetarianism and the interrelated issues of health, nutrition, ecology, ethics, and world hunger. In addition to publishing the Vegetarian Journal, VRG produces and sells cookbooks, other books, pamphlets, and article reprints. Serves people nationwide.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources
Women's Prison Association

The Women's Prison Association (WPA) offers a range of services aimed at helping women in the New York City area. Their direct service network is organized in three broad areas; Residential and Family Services; Reentry Services; and neighborhood based services.  Provides transitional planning and education in NY women's prisons, as well as HIV counseling and testing. Serves women in New York state only.


Nationwide Organizations and Resources, Women's Organizations and Resources, HIV Resources