What is legal solidarity?
Legal Solidarity is a strategy that uses group decision-making and action to protect people when they are being held in the legal system.
Jails and courts are designed to make people feel powerless. By using solidarity tactics - making legal decisions as a group, acting in unity with each other, and committing yourselves to safeguarding every arrestee's interests - you can gain more control over what happens to you in the jails and courts. Legal Solidarity has been used effectively for decades in the civil rights, peace, environmental, and global justice movements, among others.
Understanding the theory and tools of Legal Solidarity - its practical objectives, using tactics and demands, and distinguishing between Jail and Court Solidarity - is crucial to using these tools effectively.
Objectives of legal solidarity
If you are considering using Legal Solidarity, it's important to know what your specific goals are and which tactics will help you achieve those goals. Specific goals should be under the more general goal of taking care of each other.
People should be ready to use solidarity to take care of everyone, but should be especially on the lookout for people who may be more likely to suffer discrimination: women, minors, people on temporary protection visas, Aboriginal people who are seen as leaders; people who go limp or use more militant tactics, transgender or queer people, people who dress punk or who wear all black, people on probation or parole and people with prior arrests or convictions.