Laura Magnani Laura Magnani is Assistant Regional Director for AFSC’s West Region, and has been working on criminal justice issues since the 1970s. She served as the lobbyist for the Friends Committee on Legislation in Sacramento, California, working on a broad range of issues including equal rights, housing, criminal justice, and militarism. Her work with AFSC began in 1989, where she has continued her healing justice work.
Laura is author of America’s First Penitentiary: A Two Hundred Year Old Failure, (1990) and co-author, along with Harmon Ray, of Beyond Prisons: A New Interfaith Paradigm for Our Failed Prison System, (2006). Written as part of her work with AFSC, Beyond Prisons is a comprehensive analysis of the racial, social and economic underpinnings of the criminal justice system. She also authored the 2008 report Buried Alive: Long-term Isolation in California’s Youth and Adult Prisons. https://www.afsc.org/media-kit/bios/laura-magnani
Laura Magnani Benefit for AFSC In September of this year, Laura Magnani will retire from her work for the American Friends Service Committee’s Healing Justice program.
Over the 30 years of her AFSC work on prison reform, including two books, countless articles, numerous art shows and a zillion actions later, Laura has been a participant in extraordinary transformations. The problem of incarceration has become more widely recognized, and reform has started. The movement’s leadership has passed to formerly incarcerated people. Laura has been a tireless advocate, a facilitator, and strategic organizer. She will be missed, but she has mentored many young people who are equipped to continue the struggle. Our hope is to raise $20,000 in Laura’s honor to boost the AFSC’s Healing Justice campaign. https://westernfriend.org/laura-magnani-benefit-afsc
2020-02-11 The four California prisoner class representatives call for solidarity and change – Laura Magnani https://sfbayview.com/2020/02/the-four-california-prisoner-class-representatives-call-for-solidarity-and-change/
2008-05-00 Buried alive: Long-term isolation in California youth and adult prisons – author Laura Magnani this report details the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation’s over-use and misuse of isolation units, with six recommendations for change. https://www.afsc.org/document/buried-alive-long-term-isolation-california-youth-and-adult-prisons
1990-01-01 America’s First Penitentiary: a 200 Year Old Failure https://www.amazon.com/Americas-First-Penitentiary-Year-Failure/dp/B000ZSWR30
Beyond prisons: A new interfaith paradigm for our failed prison system – Laura Magnani https://www.afsc.org/resource/beyond-prisons-new-interfaith-paradigm-our-failed-prison-system
2014-09-01 Love in the Belly of the Beast The first time I visited a prisoner, I was in my early 20s and working for the Friends Committee on Legislation of California in Sacramento. When we told the prisoner that two of us wanted to visit, he distanced himself from the idea as much as possible: “I know you are really busy. You shouldn’t really take the time. I’ll understand if you can’t make it.” https://www.friendsjournal.org/love-belly-beast/
2020-06-30 A Panel on Moving Forward: Visions of the Future https://www.fgcquaker.org/events/panel-moving-forward-visions-future
2013-07-30 Accompaniment: An experiment in healing justice https://www.afsc.org/friends/accompaniment-experiment-healing-justice