Tits and Sass co-editor, Urban Survivors Union leadership team member, and Whose Corner Is It Anyway co-executive director
What if society focused on acceptance and love instead of judgement and punishment?
What if we lifted people up instead of locking them up?
What if we empowered people to help themselves rather than trying to save them?
In her riveting memoir, Justice takes us into her world as a passionate and sensitive 22-year-old facing a 12-year felony sentence. From this vulnerable place, stories unravel: the fight with her mom that triggered smoking crack with her crush, her spiritual quest that led to an indoor tent, and how and why she worked at a job that didn’t pay her for months. She was desperate to stop the spiral, but she couldn’t escape herself and the punishing realities of life on the streets, addiction, and the judgement of the world around her.
Through her rocky journey, Justice experiences heartbreak, betrayal, exploitation, and systemic failure, but she never loses connection to the magic she knows lies beyond the thin veils of this human experience. After she begins to find her voice, a sympathetic judge gives her the break she’d been praying for. Hope turns into determination. She threw herself into the pursuit of universal truths, self-knowledge, and community. She begins to piece her life together. Justice connects to activism and harm reduction programs where she found language to understand her experience, and the self-love she needed to forge her own path.
As the book closes, readers meet Justice more than ten years later, during an evening of street outreach where she connects to other street-based women and femmes with the compassion that comes from shared experience. Justice’s life has changed, but the ways society stigmatizes and criminalizes survival and bodily autonomy haven’t.