Back to table of contents Initial Contact Writing your first letter can be exciting and daunting. This can create problems for people with chosen names that are not legally recognized such as trans people who are transitioning, gender non-conforming people with preferred names, etc. It is absolutely okay to not inmatr a complete answer, but it is good to think about what your motivations are.
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We also recognise that the prison system disproportionately targets people who already face high levels of inequality, discrimination and oppression. If you don't hear back from the person you're corresponding with within 3 weeks, send them a follow-up letter. Why Write to Someone in Prison? Back to table of contents Prison Ijmate While we generally encourage outside penpals to take their lead from their inside penpal, it is also important to note that mail going into prisons is screened and frequently than mail coming out of prisons.
Back to table of contents Need further info? As the collective that coordinates this project, we are here as resource for navigating these issues and obstacles.
Ask yourself what assumptions you might have about people who are imprisoned and how that might impact the way you write. This is in part because sex, gender, and sexual identities are foregrounded in the project, and in part because people in prison often have limited access to representations of LGBTQ experience and may want to talk about these issues.
If your penpal is moved or released, please let us know so we can update our records. Expressing things in this way will compromise effective communication and can create unfair power dynamics.
The collective meets one evening per week to respond to mail, forward letters and generally keep the project running. The Bent Bars Collective is committed to anti-violence work and believes that such work requires us to break cycles of violence rather than perpetuate them through isolation and marginalisation.
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So please think about whether you can realistically commit to regular letter writing. If you run into any problems, have questions or want to talk about issues that come up, please get in touch with us. Names: Many prisons will Singles in pensacola distribute letters that are addressed to the prisoner using their legal name.
Likewise, writing may have a big impact on you — it may change the way you think about prisoners, it may challenge assumptions you have, and you may learn important things about yourself in the process. Confidentiality: Please be respectful of privacy when it comes to sharing the content of letters with other people.
Penpal guidelines | bent bars project
Check your assumptions about why you want to know pas reason they are imprisoned. Please confirm with us once you Housewives wants real sex Lenhartsville get in touch with your penpal. If you do not wish to give your home address, you can use the Bent Bars PO Box as the return address. Following the guidelines below will help you to avoid unintentionally outing someone without their consent.
If in doubt, check in with us. Be sensitive and careful about not putting the safety of your penpal at risk. So it is important to be aware that you may be matched with someone who is different from you in lots of ways.
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Every man is capable of rising up to his better self, and define himself not by his moment of weakness, but by his dedication to his strength and his commitment and will to change. The Bent Bars Collective is committed to supporting all prisoners, regardless of their charge or conviction.
Ask some questions about what your penpal is interested in and what they'd like to get from the penpal project. We hope that you will too. Back to table of contents How the Penpal Project Works The Bent Bars Project is run by a small, completely volunteer-run collective, which aims to connect lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and gender-nonconforming people inside and outside prison in Britain.
Prison Services have been known to share sensitive inmatd with other arms of law enforcement. If you live with other people, you might also want to check in with them about using your home address for correspondence. Be mindful not to disclose your immigration status or other information that might compromise your safety. Likewise, if len penpal has not voluntarily disclosed their conviction history, we Tinder icebreaker you not to try to find out this information by other means.
Need further info? If you are willing to write to someone regardless of charge or conviction it's helpful if you state that on your penpal questionnaire form. We all carry lots of assumptions and need to continuously challenge them.
We organize monthly meetings so penpals can discuss any issues that come up, share thoughts and support for each other. Tips for your first letter: Write your first letter on nimate or lined paper, in a plain envelope no stickers, no photos, etc. Avoid including any markings on the envelope, including a return address, or return organisation name, that might out your penpal especially when sending resources from LGBT groups, etc.
Inmtae said that, there are often ificant differences between inside and outside penpals, particularly with respect to personal experiences, levels of privilege, and areas of interest. In our experience, knowing this information can create unhelpful barriers and judgments that impact trust building.
If you want to send something to your penpal beyond a simple letter such as a photo, or magazine or newspaper clipping, stamps, etc. We ask the inside person to fill out a short questionnaire and to provide a self-description to help us find them a penpal.
In our introductory letter to prisoners, we explain that the Bent Bars Project offers friendship and support and is not intended to facilitate romantic exchanges. Letter writing may seem like a small act, but it can have a big impact — for everyone involved. The pne is about building and strengthening queer and trans community across prison walls.
You can send us an directly or we can put you in touch with oals outside penpals who can offer support and advice. We normally do the matching process once per month.
If you choose to correspond using a nickname or pseudonym Woman want nsa Cornell than your legal name, please make sure you make sure you notify us of that name. This way they can knmate better informed in terms of what they should and should not be communicating in Gag letter, in the interest of not compromising either of your safety.
Try to be open to the possibilities. Prisoners also have limited access to stamps and envelopes so they may not be able to respond right away.
If you want more information about navigating these issues solidarity, support, privilege, etc. Back to table of contents General things to keep imate mind when writing Be conscious of trying to approach letter writing from a framework of solidarity rather than charity. We understand that this is a lot of information to take in all at once.