Via the Bent Bars Project website:
The Bent Bars Project is a new letter-writing project for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, transsexual, gender-variant, intersex, and queer prisoners in Britain. The project aims to develop stronger connections and build solidarity between LGBTQ communities outside and inside prison walls.
Bent Bars aims to work in solidarity with prisoners by sharing resources, providing mutual support and drawing public attention to the struggles of queer and trans people behind bars.
We are looking for non-imprisoned and formerly imprisoned LGBTQ people who are interested in becoming penpals. In the first month since we initiated the project, we received more than 100 requests from LGBTQ prisoners for penpals, and the requests keep coming. So we are urgently looking for non-imprisoned folks to write to prisoners. We are especially looking for gay/bi men and transwoman to be penpals.
Becoming a penpal can give a person in prison vital emotional support, help prisoners be less vulnerable to violence and assist in building networks and resources for release. Time commitment is whatever you want it to be – writing one letter a month, which can take as little as half and hour, would be great.
We are also looking for folks who want to get involved in the Bent Bars Collective, which coordinates the letter writing program, collects resources for queer/trans prisoners and does public education work on queer/trans prison issues.
Letter writing nights are held at 7pm on the third Thursday of every month at:
London Action Resource Centre
62 Fieldgate Street
Tube: Whitechapel/Aldgate East
Not in London? – or for further information on becoming a penpal or becoming part of the Bent Bars Collective, please contact the project at: