Dear Democracy Now! Visitor: We are an independent, ad-free daily news program that serves millions of viewers and listeners each month. Our show is special because we make it our priority to go where the silence is. We put a spotlight on corporate and government abuses of power and lift up the stories of ordinary people working to make change in extraordinary times. We do all of this with just a fraction of the budget and staff of a commercial news show. We do it without ads, corporate sponsorship or government funding. How is this possible? Only with your support. If everyone who visited our website in the next week donated just $15, we would cover all of our operating costs for the year. We can't do it without you. Please donate today. It takes just a couple of minutes to do your part to make sure Democracy Now! is there for you and everybody else.

Your Donation: $
Wednesday, December 20, 2000 FULL SHOW | HEADLINES | PREVIOUS: Mumia Activist Held in Isolation and Incommunicado

Life On the Outside for a Woman Who Was Granted Clemency After 16 Years in Prison

download:   Get CD/DVD More Formats
This is viewer supported news

For most of us, Christmas is a season for family and giving. For the 2 million people in America’s prisons, it is the season to cling to a slim hope for freedom. We have talked extensively about President Clinton’s pledge on Democracy Now! to consider clemency for the Native American activist Leonard Peltier.

In honor of Jubilee year 2000, some 650 faith leaders across the US are asking Clinton to consider clemency for non-violent drug offenders before he leaves office.

Elaine Bartlett was one of three women prisoners granted by clemency Gov. George Pataki last year. She was sent to the Bedford Hills maximum security prison in 1984 when she was 16 years old. She was 42 when she left. The trip home was the first time in 16 years that she had traveled without leg irons or handcuffs. She came back to a city and family she barely knew. Her children were grown. Jennifer Gonnerman wrote about the hard journey of Elaine Bartlett in a two-part series that ends in this week’s Village Voice. Today, we take a look at what the last year has been like for a woman who fell afoul of New York’s Draconian drug laws.


  • Jennifer Gonnerman, reporter for Village Voice.
  • Elaine Bartlett, served 16 years for a drug conviction and was granted clemency last December.

Related link:

Creative Commons License The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

This is viewer supported news