Society is trapped
in a cycle
of labeling, demonizing, and keeping down any person or group subject to categorization, whether by race, gender, class, or insider or outsider status,” writes Dr. Kimberly Westcott, #FullParticipation conference producer and associate counsel at CSS, in her essay on criminal record #expungement and the history of #punishment in America.
Kimberly Westcott, PhD, JD, MSW
Kimberly Westcott, PhD, JD is Associate Counsel in CSS’s Legal Department and an Adjunct Assistant Professor at
the Columbia University School of Social Work (CUSSW). A former labor and employment attorney with the New York City Transit Authority, her work with CSS includes: developing in-prison education and training opportunities to transform the nature of prison; removing barriers to employment for the formerly incarcerated; and creating living wage career pathways that resource communities of color. Ms. Westcott serves on several reintegration project development teams.
A graduate of Yale University and Rutgers University School of Law-Newark, Ms. Westcott also has a substantive background in social welfare policy, receiving her MSW and PhD from Columbia University. Ms. Westcott developed and teaches CUSSW’s “Race, Representation, Criminalization and Exclusion: Black Americans in the United States Criminal Punishment System,” writes opinion pieces on race and social justice, and has published several articles that advance a life course development-human rights approach to changing the punishment paradigm, including Westcott, K. (2015). “Race, Criminalization and Historical Trauma in the United States: Making the Case for a New Justice Framework,” Traumatology 21(4), 273-284.
The Community Service Society of New York
The Community Service Society of New York (CSS) is an informed, independent, and unwavering voice for positive action representing low-income New Yorkers. CSS addresses the root causes of economic disparity through research, advocacy, and innovative program models that strengthen and benefit all New Yorkers.