On The Count: The Prison and Criminal Justice Report


On The Count is an independent progressive radio program and news gathering collective created by formerly incarcerated activist academic professionals in 2002. It was created to provide a platform for the discussion of alternative global narratives on crime, punishment and community well-being that travel beyond current criminal, economic and social justice practices to arrive at new models for attaining human justice. It seeks to present the free and fair expression of democratic communications that challenge corporate media’s information monopoly and the values that undermine collective resistance to injustice. It serves to articulate a non-traditional vision, analysis and recommendations that propel public policy past mass incarceration and reentry social service solutions, to a new paradigm for achieving public safety and human justice.


For information about prisons, visits, packages, transportation, rules & regs, & locating your loved one(s), click HERE.

For the most comprehensive list of organizations and services for the formerly incarcerated, reentry, and currently incarcerated, click HERE.

"Moving the Race Conversation Forward" is a free downloadable two-part report by Race Forward: The Center for Racial Justice Innovation that aims to reshape and reform the way we talk about race and racism in our country.


From the Bullet to the Ballot: An Unfavorable Review of a Work on the Black Panther Party
By Bruce A. Dixon

Historians are supposed to help us make sense of the world, by illuminating the forces and trends that shape the lives and destinies of ordinary people. But historians in the service of power do something else. Whether carelessly or carefully, they omit and distort to come up with histories that justify today's establishment as the inheritors of a noble tradition of struggle on the part of ordinary people. It's time for more people's histories of our movement, and of the historic Black Panther Party. Regrettably, this is not one of them.



Each month we will feature two formerly incarcerated people, a woman and a man,  who we have selected as our Citizens of the Month.  We highlight these two to celebrate their success, but equally important for their selfless commitment to social change, their dedicated advocacy or social service provision on behalf of our population and their personal achievement.  They represent the best of us and serve as role models for what we can each aspire to become.

Gabriel Torres Rivera is director of reentry initiatives at the Community Service Society. He first joined CSS in 2000 to head the nonpartisan voter registration campaign. Since 2005, he has directed the CSS Reentry Initiative, chairing monthly Reentry Roundtable meetings to determine what policies and resources are necessary to facilitate the successful reentry of formerly incarcerated Individuals back into their communities. He is also the founder and director of CSS’s Youth Roundtable, an innovative curriculum and discussion forum to help youth take an active role on issues that impact their daily lives. 


Mrs. White- Harrigan is the Director of Drew House, an Alternative to Incarceration program under the auspices of Housing + Solutions. Presently, Mrs. White-Harrigan is on the Board of Directors for The Redemption Center, which provides housing for men and women. She is involved with various organizations such as: College and Community Fellowship, College Initiative, CSS, WPA, Correctional Association etc.


Prisons profit from 'lock up' quotas

By La Risa R. Lync

The private prison industry's profiteering off mass incarcerations has come under fire by prison reform advocates who blasted the industry’s use of bed or lockup quotas to pad their bottom line even as states attempt to decrease their prison population.  Read article

Click HERE to be led to our Youtube Channel, where we have more vidoes for you to peruse


How the Myth of the ‘Negro Cocaine Fiend’ Helped Shape American Drug Policy

By Carl L. Hart

Negro Cocaine “Fiends” Are a New Southern Menace.The provocatively headlined article had appeared in The New York Times on February 8, 1914. I was surprised by the title, although I knew it was once acceptable to print such blatantly racist words in respectable papers. But what really shocked me was how similar it was to modern media coverage of illegal drugs and how, from early on, the racialized discourse on drugs served a larger political purpose.

De Blasio Says New York Will Settle Suit Over Stop and Frisk

NYPD Commissioner Bratton to reform Operation Impact

The World's Largest Prison System May Finally Be Starting To Shrink: Report 

Biggest Overhaul in Federal Drug Sentencing in Decades Clears Major Hurdle  

Obama Says Easing Marijuana Restrictions a Job for Congress

NY State Senator Bill Perkins'
On The Count
Special segment
"Behind The Walls"
Every 4th Saturday of the Month


Have You Ever Been Arrested?
Do You Have a RAP Sheet?
Been Turned Down for a Job?
Been Denied Public Housing?
Couldn't Get Your License?

You Need a Certificate of Relief!


OTC's Senior Producer
Rob Sims

To view in-studio photos and behind the scenes video click HERE

Amiri Baraka

Lost in the political obscurity of Chris Christie and “Traffic-Gate” was the passing of one of our great literary, political, and cultural figures — Amiri Baraka on January 9th, 2014.

Amiri Baraka was a giant who remained true to his Newark roots. He was a political activist, poet, scholar, and more; and he was all of these things simultaneously and seamlessly. Is there anyone else that we can situate in the artistic, social, and political categories across and through which Amiri Baraka made his incredible impact on our lives?? There has been a lot of chatter recently on what constitutes a public intellectual or who are the black public intellectuals of the moment. Reflections on Baraka’s life and work will hopefully provide some deeper context to these discussions.  

(1). Stop the expansion of the Prison Industrial Complex.

(2). Deconstruct the criminal punishment system and replace it with efficient, cost effective, viable alternatives which incorporate institutional (system) realignment, community empowerment and individual transformation, that enhance public safety.

(3). Challenge and change the over reliance on incarceration as a solution to social and economic problems.

(4). Develop public health policies and treatment, rather than criminal punishment sanctions, for people suffering from drug and alcohol addiction and other forms of chemical dependency.

(5). Advocate for community-based alternatives to incarceration.

Learn More


Eddie Ellis, Executive Producer 
and Host

Rob Sims, Senior Producer 
and Audio Engineer

Andre Ward, Associate Producer

Robin McGinty, Editorial Producer

Steven Mangual, Latino Affairs Producer

Khalil A. Cumberbatch, 
Communications Manager and Webmaster

Jacqueline Velez, Administrator

Mazi Oyo, Videographer


WBAI Radio
Attention: On The COUNT!
388 Atlantic Avenue
Brooklyn, N.Y. 11217

email: info@onthecount.net

First Name: *
Last Name:
Zip Code: (5 digits)
Email: *

Listen Live
On The Count!


Radio Station WBAI
99.5 FM, NYC
Saturdays, 11am - 12 noon EST
For Global Stream (click)
For Archived Programs (click)

BREAKING NEWS: Petition to Free Lynn Stewart and Save Her Life Successful
A federal judge in New York City has issued a New Year's Eve order for the “compassionate release” of Lynne F. Stewart.

Stewart's lawyer, Jill R. Shellow, was quoted today as saying that the judge's ruling, “...restores my faith in the Justice Department to do the right thing. The judge’s exercise of mercy on New Year’s Eve shows his compassion for Lynne and the depth of his commitment to seeing that justice is done.”

Ms. Stewart, in a 12-page handwritten letter to the judge during the summer, said she did not want to die in prison, “a strange and loveless place,” as she put it. “I want to be where all is familiar — in a word, home.”


  • Community Service Society (CSS) Reentry Roundtable ...more
  • Police Reform Organizing Project (PROP) Events ...more

L-R, NYS Senator Bill Perkins & OTC's Communications Manager, Khalil A. Cumberbatch  

More photos

  1. City Council Members Jumaane D. Williams and Ydanis A. Rodriguez, among many others, have sponsored the Community Safety Act which is a landmark police reform legislative package that currently consists of four bills aimed at ending discriminatory policing and bringing real accountability to the NYPD. These four bills were introduced in the City Council in 2012, a hearing was held on the full package in October 2012.  On June 27, 2013, two of the Community Safety Act bills were passed by the City Council with veto-proof majorities of 34 to 17 (Intro 1080) and 40 to 11 (Intro 1079).  On July 23, 2013, Mayor Bloomberg vetoed both bills. They are now awaiting a veto override vote by the City Council on August 22, 2013.
  2. NYS Senator Bill Perkins has added his support to The Fair Application Act, which would help level the playing field for formerly incarcerated people seeking employment.
  3. NYS Assembly Members Nily Rozic and Dennis Gabryszak have become co-sponsors of The Domestic Violence (DV) Survivors Justice Act, which establishes a more compassionate sentencing process for domestic violence survivors.
  4. Assembly Members Walter Mosley and Frank Skartados have signed on to The Safe and Fair Evaluations (SAFE) Parole Act, which would create parole policies and practices that provide greater protections for public safety, are transparent, and cost effective.

Power the Movement to build a Communiversity – the Eddie Ellis Academy for Human Justice!

We know from first hand experience, that when people unite and organize, big ideas and dreams can turn into reality.

This is why we are proud and excited to announce the launch of our 2015 dream-come-true campaign: the Eddie Ellis Academy for Human Justice, in honor of our founder and president. If 5,000 people in our network donate $50 each, we can reach our goal of raising $250,000 for the Eddie Ellis Academy for Human Justice. We believe, with your help, that we can reach this goal. It is possible. We are honored to call on you as our friend and family to help power this together.

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) will be in full effect as of January 1st, 2014. Learn how it will and can affect you by watching this brief explanation of the process. Also, click on the image below to be led to the federal health care website where you can receive a quote and register online for health insurance.


Click on these icons for the full On The Count! experience

Website Builder