Storytelling, Narrative, and Journalism Internship (Remote or Hybrid)

Do you have a gift for telling stories? Are you considering a career in journalism, media, advocacy, or as a writer? (Think outside the box, many political and marketing careers also depend on storytelling skills.)

Do you also care about criminal justice reform, LGBTQ+ rights, or racial justice? Would you like to spend your semester helping to animate a grassroots advocacy campaign and conduct research into the impact of Kafkaesque systems on arguably the most marginalized populations in the United States?

Just Future Project is seeking skilled writers interested in lending their talents to help us share the lived experiences of people harmed by the criminal legal system. You will have the opportunity to interview people living behind the walls at shadow prisons around the country whose voices would otherwise have never been heard. Unlike normal prisoners, these persons have already completed their prison sentences and are now being held because the authorities believe they might commit a crime in the future.

These internships are flexible in time commitment and scope depending on your academic schedule and interest level. Involvement can encompass full-lengths feature profiles of multiple shadow prisoners, or focus more narrowly on helping people living behind the walls to relay a single isolated personal experience or anecdote in less than 300 words as a “snapshot” of their lives experience in these Orwellian facilities.

We’re looking for a bright, driven, and conscientious intern to help us change the narrative in support of an active legislative campaign challenging pre-crime preventative detention laws in Virginia.  The first bill in the country to abolish these laws is currently pending before the Virginia Senate (SB 1244).  You will also help document persuasive personal stories for a presentation to the 14th United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (Kyoto 2021).

The selected student volunteer will have the unique opportunity to work closely with a professional formerly incarcerated advocate on a combination of state and federal policy campaigns tackling some of the most challenging and marginalized issues in criminal justice reform — including some work on the international human rights stage.  You will work at the heart of the movement to challenge systems of pre-crime preventative detention, registration and notification laws, and address the intersectionality between LBGTQ rights, racial justice, and criminal justice reform.

Tasks will primarily include online research, developing documents (including presentation materials for the UN Crime Congress and dual legislative & grassroots outreach campaigns), writing memos synthesizing your research, creating blog posts on developments in our field, collaborating with staff over the phone (on average 90 minutes per day), and possibly providing assistance conducting original research to create data documenting the population impacted by these Orwellian systems.

The ideal candidate is a detail-oriented self-starter with sharp memory and vivid, evocative writing skills who is passionate about defending the inalienable rights embodied by the US Constitution and international human rights treatise (e.g. the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and European Convention on Human Rights), and interested in learning to organize advocacy campaigns.

Must be 18+, willing to tackle challenging topics and tasks with minimal oversight, and able to commit to at least 25 hours per week for a full semester.

Virtually everything happens remotely these days, because COVID. You will learn how advocates work to shift the narrative amidst these obstacles and perform as a key member of our team. You will help develop documents and other campaign materials alongside a veteran criminal justice reform advocate, providing Gen Z skillsets to accomplish what wouldn’t have been possible without the help of a digital native.

If you would like to learn more, please email contact@ajustfuture.org with a brief cover letter, resume, and samples of both your informal and formal writing, which you feel accurately demonstrates your overall written communication skills. Questions are welcome and more details will be provided to interested applicants on the focus of our grassroots organizing campaign.  (Or you can scope out our website, which has a lot of information about the constitutional and human rights nightmares these systems represent.)

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