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2016 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Just Detention International, Inc.

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Civil Rights, Crime & Law, Crime Prevention, Mental Health, Sexual Abuse Prevention

Mission: Just Detention International (JDI) is a health and human rights organization that seeks to end sexual violence in all forms of detention. JDI has three core goals: to hold government officials accountable for prisoner rape; to promote public attitudes that value the health and safety of people behind bars; and to ensure that those who have survived sexual abuse get the help they need.

Programs: JDI is the only organization in the U.S. dedicated to ending sexual abuse in detention. Working with prisoner rape survivors, legislators, and other advocates, JDI helped secure passage of the U.S. Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) of 2003 and worked to develop related state laws in California and Texas. Since then, JDI has played a key role in the implementation of these laws. JDI provides expert analysis, first-hand survivor accounts, training, and technical assistance to policymakers, corrections officials, and advocates nationwide. JDI works closely with state and county corrections systems to help them implement national standards addressing sexual abuse behind bars, developed under PREA. JDI also mobilizes allied organizations to combat sexual abuse in detention and trains community-based service providers to address the needs of prisoner rape survivors. In particular, JDI works with rape crisis centers, helping them develop partnerships with prisons and jails to ensure that survivors of abuse get the care they need in the aftermath of an assault. In all of its work, JDI ensures that survivors and their experiences play a central role in the development of public policy.

Community Stories

20 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

JDI is a phenomenal organisation. Indeed, I have never encountered a more intrepid and undaunted human rights agency anywhere in the world. JDI believes that prisoners have rights, and that everyone – yes, everyone – should demand that those rights are upheld. But the JDI team doesn’t just talk. They spend a lot of time inside jails, working with prisoners and guards to make jails safe. They don't take no for an answer. That’s part of their magic. They seem to think everything is possible, including ending rape in prison. And they are right, of course. There really are no limits to what we can accomplish if we just commit to it, fearlessly and intelligently. We all have a lot to learn from JDI.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Having worked with and founded several non-profits, I feel confident that JDI ranks among the best of them. They have a clear mission (ending sexual assault in prison) and have streamlined strategies and commitments to seeing that goal to fruition. They are a rare non-profit that keeps entirely focused on their goal, though it's tempting to spread their work further. They are also unique in being a willing team playing -- they fully understand that they can deepen their work through collaborating with others.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Collaborating with JDI on video production has been an all- around positive experience. Everyone that I have had the pleasure of working with has been thoroughly collaborative, and always open to problem- solving. I look forward to working with everyone at JDI in the future, and have enjoyed helping them do their meaningful work.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have felt privileged to support Just Detention's video production needs as a filmmaker. I have worked with multiple people at this organization, all of whom were professional, concise, thoughtful, and kind. Just Detention is a great organization because it is facilitated by great people. It's the best kind of working relationship because their passion is contagious.

3

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Just Detention International is an evidence-based advocacy group advancing a truly simple proposition: no one should be raped, inmate or civilian. They do terrific work both within facilities and on a policy level, and they recognize that a fundamental cultural shift by the public is required to end prison rape.

1 richard_geelong

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

If the goal of non-profit organizations is to RAISE AWARENESS of issues the mainline media would prefer to ignore, and be an EFFECTIVE HELP for people who those in mainstream society don't want to know, above all to help our community act out LOVE, NOT FEAR AND HATE - if that is what non-profits are there to do, then Just Detention International is the finest organization I know of. I am a professional criminologist with a particular interest in prisons, sexual assault and mental health, and I am full of admiration for the work JDI does.

Previous Stories

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am a Lecturer in Criminology with a particular interest in penal policy. For many years I have been concerned about the issues of rape and sexual abuse in prisons, and distressed by the lack of awareness of and interest shown by many other professionals, the media and the public.

I became aware of the work of JDI (then known as Stop Prison Rape) through a long letter written by David Kaiser and published in the London Review of Books. The letter set out the key issues so succinctly and effectively that I used it as a teaching resource. I also made contact with the organization, and have since become a financial supporter.

In my home country, Australia, we have no equivalent organization to JDI, and as a result we have no equivalent to the Prison Rape Elimination Act, we do not have the network of support groups for prison rape survivors, we do not have reporting mechanisms to even know the rate of sexual assault in our prisons.

By personalizing and sharing the stories of real prisoners, by staying out of (unwinnable) arguments about punitive policies, and instead focusing on our social duty to ensure the basic safety and dignity of those people society incarcerates, JDI has made a positive difference in the lives of countless thousands of the most vulnerable people in the world.

There are many non-profit organizations who do great work in all sorts of fields - from community sports to supporting elite artists -- but my measure of what makes a really great non-profit is that it effectively helps people who no one else wants to know. JDI has no particular religious focus, but as a committed Christian I see its work as exemplifying Christian love in action.

I am proud to support JDI, and I regard them as a model for civic society advocacy and support on this issue.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

JDI is an extraordinarily effective and impressive organization. It shows the rest of us what human rights advocacy is supposed to look like, and what it can achieve. When they say that everyone has equal value, they mean it. By drawing attention to the plight of inmates, they are changing the way this country runs its prisons, making it clear that inmates are people too -- and that rape isn't part of the penalty. This is an organization I will continue to support until sexual abuse in detention is finally a problem of the past. Keep at it, JDI!

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I met JDI colleagues during meetings Amnesty International UN Office in NY organized on torture prevention and I have been impressed by its work ever since. JDI does a very courageous and important work on an outrage that often people do not want to even recognize it exists. Its work with survivors of rape and other sexual abuse in detention is moving and effective. JDI is an organization that deserves all the support people could provide.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

JDI has been instrumental in my work as an advocate! I appreciate everything JDI does for professionals in the field but especially for survivors. Thank you JDI!

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I'm a Licensed Mental Health Counselor working with JDI in the Miami-Dade Correction Facilities for almost a year. I have never worked for a more passionate or dedicated organization. JDI advocates tirelessly for incarcerated victims of sexual violence and helps give them a voice. Too often, individuals who are incarcerated are seen as less deserving because of crimes they have committed and are not treated with the respect that we all deserve as human beings. JDI helps make a huge difference by providing services to a very underserved population and we need more organizations like them. I am proud to be a part of this organization and serve in a small capacity to help meet the needs of these individuals.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

This is one of the most impressive non-profit organizations in the U.S. I am a longtime executive director of other similar non-profits and I have long admired the brilliant way that JDI is managed as well as the passion and commitment of it's very effective staff. Even though I am often busy, their appeals have convinced me to volunteer on several occasions over the years.

Their website and social media are especially impressive. They handle a very "tabu" subject with the dignity and strong attention that it deserves. Big Kudos for all around excellence.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Wow .. Where do I start . I have worked in this field for over 17 years . A year ago I joined JDI and I provide therapy to inmates in Miami, FL jails . I work with inmates who are victims / survivors of sexual abuse / trauma history at some point in there lives. JDI counseling program is outstanding and needed. Most of the inmates over 81% have experience severe sexual abuse / trauma which has impacted there lives in some way . There sexual abuse history probably has a lot to do with the choices and decisions that lead them to be incarcerated. . The inmates are engaged , cooperative and committed to there therapeutic process. 90% of the clients I see on a weekly basis never received any form of counseling/ therapy to address there trauma . Most people see the inmates as criminals, please don't get me wrong I am not minimizing or dismisses there crimes . After hearing there life stories years of abuse, I see them as survivors who have experienced years of abuse , trauma and neglect . The services offered by JDI gives so many women and men opportunities to address there hurt and pain. So when they are released they might have a better chance in life . They can continue there treatment and seek mental health services. I pray and hope agencies and organizations will be able to continue the services they provide that are so needed. The inmates are thankful and appreciative they have a chance to deal with past trauma. With JDI services and other non profit agencies services in our communities so many people receive help Let's continue to support and discuss the importance of non profit agencies/ organizations . I see everyday how the services offered make a difference in SO many people lives ...

Zoe G.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I work for our state coalition of sexual and domestic violence programs and recently began working with the Department of Corrections to implement the PREA standards. JDI has been an invaluable resource for my work, providing in depth advice, support and technical assistance. They've provided a road map for our work locally and generously shared model policy and best practice. I don't know where we'd be without the help of JDI in doing this important work. They've shared so much of their own experience and hard work that and this has made our work here so much better than it would be if we were traveling without a road map. Thank you!

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have worked closely with JDI for the past couple of years and have found their staff to be exceptional professionals who care deeply about ending rape in confinement settings. They are passionate about their work and I have thoroughly enjoyed working with them.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a policy advocate for transgender people, I have been incredibly impressed with JDI's commitment to include LGBT people, people with intersex conditions, and other vulnerable populations in everything that they do. I have also been impressed with their fusion of deep policy expertise with supporting and lifting up the voices and stories of survivors. Their work has provided connection and support to thousands of individuals and made an enormous difference in policy efforts to prevent abuse in confinement. They make critical contributions to every coalition effort of which they are a part.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

JDI is on the national forefront in raising awareness and bringing about an end to the sexual assault of individuals who are incarcerated. Their tireless work around the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) legislation and standards, as well as their efforts in public education and awareness, are unmatched in this country. TD3 Consulting has been privileged to partner with Linda McFarlane and other JDI staff and volunteers, along with the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR), on a variety of projects. We know that when we work with JDI - we are making a difference.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Just Detention International is a group that is, quite simply, changing the world. Through policy reform, advocacy, and direct work with survivors of prisoner rape, this human rights organization has helped bring about the most significant prison reform in the United States in more than 30 years.

JDI has also begun to expand its work to parts of the world where HIV in prisons looms as a major threat to community health. This expansion will build on the group's reputation for hard-hitting advocacy and its expertise about what really works to keep people safe.

Notably, this group's impressive record of accomplishment has been undertaken with a lean budget and small but tenacious staff. I can't think of an organization more worthy of support!

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Through my training with JDI I have acquired skills and valuable knowledge that assists me with my work and treatment of my clients. This knowledge I can pass onto different levels within my organization: social workers, top management and general staff.

The service JDI has rendered is particularly important in the orientation of new clients, better equipping them to protect themselves and makes their stay in the facility more bearable.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Women's Center-High Desert, Inc. has been involved with Just Detention International since 2005. We work closely together to provide confidential rape ciisis counseling to incarcerated victims of sexual assault. Our pilot site is at Californa Correctional Institution-Tehachapi. We have presented our program at the National Sexual Assault Conference in Los Angeles as well as the California Probation, Parole, and Corrections conference in San Francisco. Due to Just Detention International's continued work on the PREA standards, we were invited to attend a listenting session hosted by the Department of Justice in Washington D.C. We value our working relationship with Just Detention International and truly believe that we are helping to target a population that has been overlooked and ignored for too long.