Hasshan Batts

Hasshan Batts
Location: Allentown, Pennsylvania Cohort Start Year: 2019
Director, Allentown Promise Neighborhood
Promise Neighborhoods of the Lehigh Valley

Hasshan Batts is a content and context expert who works to uplift the voices of those most impacted, those who often possess the most intimate and creative solutions yet are most often ignored. He is a champion in Allentown, Pa., for trauma-informed care, restorative practices, reentry, community engagement, and collective impact.

STRATEGIC INITIATIVE: Prison Survivors Institute (Mitigating the Impact of Mass Incarceration)
Mass incarceration is a public health crisis and the human rights issue of our time. The prison industrial complex disproportionately impacts racialized communities and has been recognized as a key issue by Healthy People 2020 in the Social and Community Context domain and is known to significantly impact the health and life outcomes of communities. There are over 2.4 million people incarcerated across the U.S., and an additional 4.7 million under some form of community supervision. In addition to the staggering incarceration rates across the country, recidivism rates are disturbing. Over seven million people are released from jails and prisons annually, and two out of three will be rearrested within three years. I will develop a national institute that will serve as a source to increase hope, sense of belonging, and agency to decrease recidivism. Prison Survivors Institute (PSI) will function as a support system, clearinghouse, virtual learning management system, and organizing and advocacy hub for those impacted by mass incarceration across the United States. PSI will be led by a cross-sector collaboration of context and content experts composed of prison survivors, criminal justice involved, and family members of those directly impacted by the prison industrial complex.

Hasshan is a survivor, healer, son, father, husband, champion, neighbor, and friend. Hasshan possesses a unique lens as someone with lived experience, as well as being a practitioner, nonprofit administrator, and community-based participatory researcher.

Click here to watch Hasshan’s Legacy Project video.