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New York’s March for Justice

Organizer Soffiyah Elijah leads the March for Justice through the streets of downtown Poughkeepsie, New York.

Participants in the March for Justice carry banners along a sidewalk in downtown Poughkeepsie, New York.

Soffiyah Elijah prepares marchers as they head out from a church parking lot in Beacon, New York.

Lilly Oseitutu holds the megaphone for Miss Ivey as the March for Justice makes its way through the streets of New Paltz, New York.

March for Justice organizer Soffiyah Elijah carries her megaphone as she leads the group in a chant.

Miss Ivey, 82, clutches the hand of Journey Truth, 105, in a sign of solidarity as the two oldest participants march through downtown New Paltz, New York.

Journey Truth, 105, puts on her seatbelt after participating in the March for Justice as it made its way through downtown New Paltz, New York.

A resident waves up at the marchers as they make their way across a bridge spanning the Hudson River.

Soffiyah Elijah recites a chant as she leads the March for Justice across the Hudson River.

Participants in the March for Justice walk across the Skywalk Over the Hudson.

Ray Ray stretches out her hamstring at an exercise station on the Hudson Valley Rail Trail after walking six miles as a member of the March for Justice as it made its way from Poughkeepsie, New York, to New Paltz, New York.

Marchers carry a banner past a beauty salon in Poughkeepsie, New York, as the school bus and the rest of the caravan follow them.

A marcher holds a banner to get the attention of passing drivers as the group makes its way to Albany, New York.

A banner featuring prisoners and their families hangs on the side of the school bus that accompanies the marchers on their route and takes them to destinations when the roads are too dangerous to march on.

The feet of a marcher are reflected in the rear view mirror of the school bus.

A house in Poughkeepsie, New York, is reflected in the school bus that is part of the caravan for the March for Justice.

Marchers consult a map to chart their possible route as the March for Justice makes its way to Albany, New York.

Soffiyah Elijah leads the marchers in a stretch session to get their chi going before they hit the streets.

A March for Justice volunteer raises his fist in Poughkeepsie, New York

The Reformed Church of New Paltz hosted a Labor Day barbecue for the March for Justice.

A young boy watches a volunteer unpack the March for Justice’s supply truck outside the Reformed Church of New Paltz, New York.

A marcher gets supplies from the March for Justice supply truck.

Soffiya Elijah serves herself dinner during a Labor Day barbecue hosted by the New Paltz Reformed Church.

March for Justice fliers dry on a table in the Universal Unitarian church in Poughkeepsie, New York, after getting wet in the rain en route from Beacon, New York.

Soffiyah Elijah and the other marchers watch a video from the previous day of an altercation between a participant and a prison administrator outside the Fishkill Correctional Facility.

Marchers eat breakfast in the Universal Unitarian church in Poughkeepsie, New York, before walking to New Paltz, New York.

A March for Justice participant in the Universal Unitarian church in Poughkeepsie, New York.

Participants in the March for Justice sleep on blow-up mattresses in church sanctuaries.

A March for Justice participant gets ready for bed on her blow-up mattress in the sanctuary of the Universal Unitarian church in Poughkeepsie, New York.

March for Justice Organizer Soffiyah Elijah takes a quick morning nap on a couch in the Universal Unitarian church in Poughkeepsie, New York, before heading out for the day’s march.

Photos by Clarissa Sosin


They were white and black, young and old, gay, trans and straight, putting themselves on the line for what the organizer called the civil rights movement for the 21st century.

Soffiyah Elijah came up with the 180-mile walk from Harlem to Albany, New York, an attempt to draw attention to the abuses in state prisons and, they hoped, bring about some reforms. She is the executive director of the Alliance of Families for Justice.

The March for Justice is now over, but the campaign for justice reform goes on. The story of the march is above in photos and below in a series of stories.

Check out previous New York March coverage

 

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