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who we are

DARE members formed the Behind the Walls Committee over two decades ago in resistance to the prison system.

We are a community of people who have been impacted by incarceration. Some have records and others are loved ones of people behind bars. Our community’s victories include voting rights for formerly incarcerated people; increased access to public housing for folks with records; and Ban the Box legislation that made it illegal for an employer to require an applicant to disclose their record. 

In addition to organizing for the rights of people impacted by incarceration, we also prioritize care and support for one another. We believe that building strong communities is necessary if we are to reduce our society’s reliance on incarceration. Care in our space looks like: celebrating birthdays and personal wins; sharing and support each other through losses; supporting one another’s businesses; connecting each other with job and housing opportunities; checking up on one another, and more. 


The Behind the Walls committee meets every Wednesday from 6-8 pm at DARE. Dinner is provided and childcare and Spanish interpretation can be arranged upon request.

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The Behind the Walls committee is supported by DARE member dues, sustaining donors, Ben & Jerry’s Foundation, The Formerly Incarcerated, Convicted People and Families Movement (FIPCFM), NEO Philanthropy’s Circle for Justice Innovations Fund, Common Stream Foundation, RI Foundation, & Unitarian Universalist Fund for a Just Society.

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