Orleans Parish Prison Reform Coalition Correct Misinformation

Leaders of OPPRC reached out to their supporters yesterday to correct any misconceptions members might have had about the Help Not Handcuffs (HNH) campaign based on inaccurate information published in a recent article in by Antigravity Magazine.

OPPRC’s Sade Dumas voiced strong concerns about the article’s “false and wildly malicious statements.” The story directly named OPPRC and suggested that the HNH campaign was anti-abolition and pro-police. “Unfortunately, this can not be further from the truth and we wanted to make sure we restated and made clear the goals of the HNH campaign to ensure you all know that they have not changed,” said Dumas.

Dumas stated that the article was a poor excuse for journalism and a disgrace. “It’s disrespectful that these writers would take a campaign led by Black, queer, directly affected individuals, and native New Orleanians and smear it with disinformation.” Dumas said that she and others involved in the process were misquoted and that many of the claims were false.

“There were over 500 people who attended listen and learn sessions to support this initiative of a non-police crisis response team and give feedback on how they would want this to look in the city. None of the people who attended those sessions, along with the dozens who worked on this campaign, would agree with that piece.

Dumas said that HNH supporters have already called out the publication on different social media platforms. “This piece needs to be retracted, and the harm done from misinformation must be acknowledged,” she continued. 

The purpose of the Help Not Handcuffs campaign is to create and establish a non-police crisis response team to respond to mental health crises in New Orleans. It has received wide support from the community and New Orleans elected officials including Mayor LaToya Cantrell. 

“Inaccurate statements like those posted in this magazine damage campaigns that Black, native, directly impacted New Orleanians are leading. It also dramatically disrespects and endangers those centered and directly affected. Help Not Handcuffs is about providing adequate care to our neighbors with mental health diagnoses! OPPRC has always shouted ‘Care Not Cages,’ ‘Help Not Handcuffs,’ “Care Over Cops,” and we continue to do so,” Dumas continued. OPPRC plans to send Anti-Gravity Magazine a Letter to the Editor later this week outlining their concerns and requesting a retraction.      

Editor’s note: This article has been updated to more accurately reflect the views of OPPRC. 

Help Keep Big Easy Magazine Alive

Hey guys!

Covid-19 is challenging the way we conduct business. As small businesses suffer economic losses, they aren’t able to spend money advertising.

Please donate today to help us sustain local independent journalism and allow us to continue to offer subscription-free coverage of progressive issues.

Thank you,
Scott Ploof
Big Easy Magazine

Share this Article

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *