About The Conference

Join us for our annual conference and arts festival, Full Participation is a Human Right – Moving Beyond Punishment, a city-wide gathering that brings into focus the criminalization of race and its relationship to punishment; the extraordinary costs to individuals, families, and communities; and the need to elevate the human right to fully participate in the life of the community. 

Full Participation is a Human Right 2019 is the featured New York City event of 400 Years of Perseverance, ASALH’s year-long series commemorating the African American experience in the United States dating from their arrival in Jamestown, VA in 1619 to the present.  This event features discussions, performances and opportunities for engagement.

This year’s conference and arts festival explore the impact of enslavement on African Diaspora communities and their collective struggle for humanity, the evolving role of the punishment system, and the cultivation of art as healing and as an affirmation of the right to fully participate in the life of the community.



Thursday and Friday, October 17-18, 2019 (9 AM-9 PM)


Arts Festival

Saturday, October 19, 2019 (Noon-8 PM)

Gallery35 Gallery Exhibition and Panel Discussion

Thursday, October 17, 2019 (5:15PM-6:15 PM)


The Community Church of New York

40 E. 35th Street

New York, NY 10017




Professor Barbara Simon, Columbia University

Professor Samuel Roberts, Columbia University (moderator)

Flores Forbes – Associate VP, Government and Community Affairs, Columbia University

Joanna Weiss, Co-Director, Fines and Fees Justice Center

Rev. Winnie Varghese,  Director, Racial Justice Program, Trinity Church Wall Street

Avery Bizzell, Organizer, CSS

Oksana Mironova, Housing Policy Analyst, CSS

Rob Robinson, Picture the Homeless, NESRI

Jumaane Williams, Public Advocate

Malaika Jabali, Public Policy Attorney and Journalist

Professor Tom Angotti, CUNY

Professor Gloria J. Browne-Marshall, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CNN Commentator

Sean Doyle-Morales, Fellow, Brennan Center for Justice

Dr. Bernard Gassaway, former NYC Department of Education Superintendent and Principal

Jennifer Jones-Austin, Executive Director, FPWA

Judy Whiting, General Counsel, CSS

Vivian Nixon, Executive Director, College and Community Fellowship

Wesley Caine, Director of Reentry and Community Outreach, Bronx Defender Services

Shawanna Vaughn, Executive Director, Silent Cry

Lorna Woodham, USDC, Newark, NJ, ReNew Project

Wallace St. Clair, Director, Center for Employment Opportunities

Carlos Jesse, Project Director, NDP, CSS

Mo Beasley, poet activist and Theater Director, Arsht Performing Arts Center

Pastor Isaac Scott, Center for Justice, The Confined Arts

Lamumba Bandele, National Organizer, NAACP Legal Defense Fund

Apache Brown, Musician

Jamila Codrington, Chair, Association of Black Psychiatrists           

Bob Law, Radio Host, WBAI

New York Assembly Member Charles Barron

New York State Senator Zellnor Myrie

Sean Pica, Executive Director, Hudson Link

Kimberly Westcott, Associate Counsel, CSS

Professor Richard Wolff, New School University, Democracy at Work


The Soulfolk Experience

Isaac Scott and The Confined Arts

Shawanna Vaughn and Silent Cry

Wallace St. Clair

Dara Taylor and Tyler Anderson

Jacqueline Wade

Tyrik Washington

Mo Beasley

Ben Grosscup

Dilson Hernandez

Kamal Manuel

Ilya Kostovski

Karma Lowe

Apache Brown

Artistic Partners


The Confined Arts

Mo Beasley

Gloria J. Browne-Marshall

The People’s Voice Cafe