Families and Friends of Louisiana’s Incarcerated Children (FFLIC) is a statewide membership-based organization that fights for a better life for all of Louisiana’s youth, especially those involved in or targeted by the juvenile justice system.
As mothers and fathers, grandparents, siblings, cousins, aunts, uncles and allies FFLIC believes in and implements a model of organizing that is people and community centered, and is explicitly anti-racist.
FFLIC engages in education, community building, leadership development, and advocacy through strategically chosen goals in order to empower individuals, families and communities to transform currently oppressive systems and institutions into ones that uphold justice for families, to build strong, powerful families and communities and to fight for justice for themselves and their children.
From the street level to the state level, from meeting rooms to the state capitol, FFLIC is working to build a society based on the principles of racial justice, human rights, and full participation through tirelessly fighting for justice for youth. For this reason, FFLIC seeks to build a truly democratic, multiracial organization whose membership reflects their communities.
FFLIC believe that its membership are the “experts” on what their communities need and that solidarity and collective action are the most powerful tools in a struggle for self-determination and justice for their children and families.
FFLIC is gearing up to launch the 50/2017 campaign. The five year campaign goals are to increase FFLIC's active membership base by 50%, develop 50 Leader Members, reduce the number of non-violent youth in secure care by 50%, reduce the number of suspensions, expulsions and school juvenile justice referrals as it relates to "willful disobedience, habitually tardy and absent" by 50%, and eliminate the use of suspensions and expulsions for willful disobedience by 2017.
FFLIC made their public debut in September of 2001 when they organized the “Mock Jazz Funeral,” a march that adapted a New Orleans tradition to mourn the lost freedom and departing dreams of their children. More than 150 people marched, and brass bands played while chanting parents and children led the way to Orleans Parish Juvenile Court. The funeral’s double meaning soon became clear. Parents wanted more than the reform that the lawsuits had envisioned: they wanted the death of the Tallulah Correctional Center for Youth (TCCY). FFLIC was born and the “Close Tallulah Now!” Campaign became a reality. In May 2003, the Juvenile Justice Reform Act, Act 1225 was passed to overhaul the juvenile justice system and close the Tallulah Correctional Center for Youth. This was accomplished by parents and advocates participating in numerous actions to grow public support like juvenile justice forums around the state, media events, and the Mock Jazz Funeral. FFLIC continues to sit at the table and participate in the effort and fight for even more programs for their children, resources for their communities and justice for their youth.
Since then, FFLIC along with allies, have worked to reduce the numbers of security guards in New Orleans public schools by 50 percent in 2008, and successfully training school personnel about the School to Prison Pipeline. FFLIC holds quarterly accountability meetings with the Office of Juvenile Justice to monitor the reform progress and how they are keeping families involved in their children’s treatment. FFLIC also educated lawmakers to pass SB 528, SB 67 and SB527/Act 136 in 2010 which requires that teachers receive classroom management training that includes training on conflict resolution and positive behavior supports methods that should keep children in the classrooms and off the streets being targeted for prison. Read the report “Pushed Out: Harsh Discipline in Louisiana’s Schools Denies the Right to Education” written in collaboration with the National Economic Social Rights Initiative.