by Moxye Staff
The pipeline to prison is a problem that disproportionately affects the African-American community and four Black women who are judges and members of Alpha Kappa Alpha and Delta Sigma Theta have teamed up to create a program in Dallas to combat it.
The program they have created is called Pipeline to Possibilities and it focuses on changing the pipeline to prison in the local school system around Dallas. Through the program, youth are educated on various aspects of the justice system and taught life skills, redirecting them from engaging in criminal behavior.
The program was created by four elected judges who are members of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
Judge Shequitta Kelly presides over Dallas County’s Misdemeanor Family Violence Criminal Court #11. She was initiated into Delta Sigma Theta in the fall of 1998 through the Gamma Nu chapter on the campus of Indiana University. She is #8 of the 18 R.E.N.O.W.N.E.D. line. www.shequittakelly.com
Judge Amber Givens-Davis presides over Dallas County’s 282nd Judicial District Felony Criminal Court. She was initiated into Alpha Kappa Alpha in the spring of 2003 through the Omicron Theta Omega chapter in St. Louis, Missouri. She is #5 of the S.S. Cloud 9 line. www.ambergivensdavis.com
Judge Stephanie Mitchell presides over Dallas County’s 291st Judicial District Felony Criminal Court. She was initiated into Alpha Kappa Alpha in the spring of 1999 through the Delta chapter on the campus of University of Kansas. She is #12 of the S.S. Spectrum. line. www.judgestephaniemitchell.com
Judge Lisa Green presides over Dallas County’s Misdemeanor Criminal Court #5. She was initiated into Alpha Kappa Alpha in the spring of 1994 through the Delta Rho City Wide chapter on the campus of St. Marys. She is #4 of the Entertainer line. www.judgelisagreen.com
The program they created consists of 4 class sessions covering the following topics:
– Introduction to the Criminal Justice System
-Presentation and Appearance
(Students are taught how to tie ties, apply makeup and present themselves respectably both in person and through their social media presence.)
(Where they address different obstacles the students are dealing with and offer solutions to approach their challenges. Students also get to hear from people who found themselves in the criminal justice system because of the decisions they made while they were young and help the participants understand how important it is to make good choices.)
-College Explosion & Bridging Law Enforcement and Neighborhoods In Dallas
(Students get to learn about different careers, colleges and entrepreneurships. This sessions kicks off with a greek step show. Students also get an opportunity discuss with law enforcement their concerns. Topics include the rise in police shootings of unarmed men across the country and concerns law enforcement officers).