Create communities in which all people - regardless of race - are able to move through the world as valued human beings, with equal opportunity and freedom from all violence.



We organize clergy, young people, police and criminal justice officials in cities such as Sacramento, Stockton, Union City, Oakland, Richmond, California, Flint, Michigan and Baton Rouge, Louisiana to reduce gun violence through a strategic initiative known as Ceasefire that saves young African-American and Latino men’s lives, as well as reduces recidivism in these communities. Additionally PICO federations and partners in Detroit, Fresno, and Indianapolis are working to strengthen the implementation of this program.



We identify the Axis of Evil at the county level in order to determine the power needed to dismantle the sources that deny our people the God-given right to live free.

We then organize our base of clergy, youth, the formerly incarcerated, and their families to move into local, state, and national efforts to advance specific policy changes. At the same time, we use civic engagement strategies to increase voting turnout among people of faith and others who are committed to making communities of color free from unjust incarceration.



We organize public and private sector partnerships to remove the conviction history question from federal contractor job applications, eliminating the barriers that block economic development and prevent the hard-to-employ from obtaining jobs.

Ban the Box is much more than the removal of the dreaded question “Have you been convicted of a crime?” Ban the Box is a larger effort to dismantle structural discrimination.



This report is a tool for local communities to reduce the number of people of color lost to gun homicides and incarceration.

It shows that we are putting far too many people in local jails for extraordinarily long periods of time – often without ever being charged or convicted of crimes. Our jails are full of people behind bars simply because they’re poor, or have untreated mental health or drug addiction. The human and financial costs of jail-first policies are enormous.

The report compares county jail data and local policies to best practices in communities across the U.S. It provides a roadmap for dramatically reducing the number of people entangled in the criminal justice system and adopting policies that prevent gun violence without criminalizing whole communities.

What follows is a blueprint, a set of best practices implemented across the country that we challenge counties and local municipalities to adopt. Will your county be a LIVE FREE County?