Karen James speaks with Biff Chaplow from Beyond These Walls, a Trans led organization that offers a number of programs to support LGBTQ prisoners in Oregon and Washington. Beyond These Walls manages a COVID-19 Hotline (503-329-9740). They collaborate with other community partners to address the conditions and concerns reported by prisoners. Beyond These Walls staff and advisory committee are exclusively LGBTQ; they believe programs affecting those incarcerated should be led by people incarcerated in the prison system. Other programs include case management, pen pal & card writing, visiting in the prisons, and reentry programs.
Beyond These Walls was founded in 2011 as a project of the National LGBTQ Task Force and started as a project to send cards to LGBTQ prisoners during the holidays. When they decided to extend community to their LGBTQ family living behind bars, the response from prisoners was overwhelming. As their project grew, they came to better understand prisoners’ needs and they now offer a number of programs to support LGBTQ prisoners.
COVID-19 HOTLINE 503-329-9740