Here are some ways you can support the campaign:
Participate in the call-in campaign to Cuomo's office
What is our call to action?
We’re asking Governor Cuomo and his administration to use his unlimited power to grant clemency and grant commutations to criminalized survivors of Domestic Violence currently incarcerated throughout the New York State Prison System.
What is a phone zap?
Call-in campaigns, also known as “phone zaps,” are one of many tools to directly let public officials and others know what you want them to do or to stop doing.
Who are we targeting?
- Office of Governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo -- 518-474-8343 or 212-681-7753
- Counsel to the Governor, Alphonso B David -- 212-681-7753
- Executive Clemency Bureau -- (518) 457-7565
Hi, I’m a New York State resident from _____ and I’m calling about survivors of domestic violence. In the eight years Governor Cuomo has been in office, he’s only commuted the sentences of 12 people. Only one of those 12 commutations has been for a survivor of domestic violence. I’m calling to urge Governor Cuomo to use his clemency powers and commute the sentences of survivors of domestic violence who are imprisoned for survival actions, including defending their lives or the lives of their children, removing children from abusive people, and acting as an “accomplice” under coercion. Are you the person I can speak to about this? This will take 5 minutes of your time.
[No, but I will connect you to the right extension]: Thank you. (when connected, repeat above).
[No]: Can you please connect me to the right extension? Can you provide me the correct number in case we get disconnected.
[Yes.]: Great, what’s your name? [PAUSE TO HEAR NAME] Great, NAME, thanks for your time. New York City law enforcement responded to 284,660 domestic violence incidents, and police outside of New York City responded to 187,710 domestic violence incidents. In eight years, Governor Cuomo has only pardoned 163 people after they’ve served their sentences, and commuted the sentences of only 12. Right now, there are people in NY State prisons who are incarcerated because they had to defend themselves against their abusers for their own life. Many of them were given plea deals and their case was never even heard at trial. Governor Cuomo should free them all, but here is a list of currently incarcerated people. The group I am calling on behalf of, Survived & Punished NY, has spoken to and is specifically urging Governor Cuomo to free:
- Darlene Benson-Seay
- Kelly Forbes
- Theresa Debo
- Connie Leung
- Brenda Hartman
- Laura Martin
- Cynthia Galens
- Breanna Simpson
- Joanne Armour
- Patrice Smith
- Tanisha Davis
- Jacqueline Smalls
- Shantell Green
Thanks for listening and recording this down to submit to the Governor. Do you need my contact information? [Give contact information if comfortable, and then end call].
Support the #FreeThemNY PostcardPalooza Campaign!
We want New Yorkers to mail 10,000 postcards to Governor Andrew Cuomo. Can you help us reach our goal? There are many ways to support the postcard campaign!
- If you are a New York resident, you can download the postcard templates here or here, and then print and mail it to Cuomo any time.
- Come to our upcoming events, where we will have postcards you can fill out in person. We will mail the postcards for you.
- If you want us to mail you a stack of postcards that you promise to have people in your community fill out and then mail directly to the Governor, email your mailing address to us at email@example.com and we'll mail you some cards.
- We're a volunteer-led effort funded through grassroots donations so if you have the means to make your own postcards, we have a pair of templates, here and here, that you can print out and get people in your community to mail to Cuomo. You can then mail the cards yourself.
- If you want to donate to us to help us cover the postcard printing costs, you can do so here. (Select Survived and Punished NY so they allocate the funds properly.)
More ways to support the campaignJoin our mailing list
Endorse the campaign!
Please email us if you would like to initiate a conversation about your organization endorsing our campaign, or if you are interested in organizing with us directly.
Contact the governor
Please call Governor Cuomo directly at 1-518-474-8390 if you can! You can also use the form linked above. Here is some suggested language you can use to begin the conversation or leave a message:
I am disappointed in Governor Cuomo's decision to exercise his clemency powers so rarely. New York should be a leader in addressing the crisis of incarceration. I stand with the #FreeThemNY campaign to demand Governor Cuomo immediately use his clemency powers to free criminalized survivors of gender violence held in prisons in New York.