In the early 2000’s, Critical Resistance New York City and Community In Unity organized to successfully stop a proposed new jail from being built on a toxic site at Oak Point in the South Bronx. This 2,000 bed jail was proposed under reformist logic to improve the conditions for women, families visiting their loved ones, and access to services for those imprisoned. Community In Unity took a firm stance that jailing cannot be improved. Rather, they argued, jails must be dismantled and investments must be made in community based care instead, such as community and recreation centers, affordable housing, healthy jobs, public hospitals and walk-in clinics, and mental health services.
As part of the campaign CRNYC held workshops, internships, and support groups through La Casita Community Garden to engage women directly impacted by policing and jailing in New York City. The coalition built momentum through bringing in other organizations such as Mothers on the Move, JusticeWorks Community, Bronx Defenders, For a Better Bronx, and others. Together with Critical Resistance, coalition members mobilized to decision making hearings, held community based townhalls and education sessions, and garnered the strong attention of the media by uplifting campaign messaging. Ultimately the campaign was successful and the City abandoned its proposal to build a new jail in the South Bronx, an area that at the time was the poorest congressional district in the country.