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Open Letter Summary
The following account details the harm experienced within various communities that David Brazil and Sarah Pritchard founded or worked with and then abandoned, covering a time period of seven years. It is meant to give those who are coming into sustained contact with them—particularly in the context of movement and spiritual spaces—a more complete understanding of their patterns.
As David and Sarah have ignored or rejected various attempts to engage them in transformative justice processes, we have turned to sharing this open letter as a way to provide others with information that we believe would have helped each of us make better decisions regarding whether or how to collaborate with them on projects.
Because the account we provide is fully documented and therefore quite long, we are providing here this summary of the timeline involved and patterns observed in order to increase the accessibility of the information we have learned:
1. Agape Interfaith Fellowship, Oakland, CA (2015–2019)
2. Abolition Apostles and Abolition Church (2019–2022), New Orleans, LA / National
3. Similar patterns have been identified in many additional contexts, some of which could not be included in our account due to their personal nature or the limits of our own capacity. A significant theme is an unwillingness to collaborate and share power with others. Some examples from David and Sarah’s time in New Orleans follow:
We want to note that we received more accounts of harm citing David’s individual behavior than Sarah’s. However, they have presented themselves as a leadership unit in the organizations and fellowships that they founded, and we were told of troubling behavior by Sarah as well, so we have ultimately stated that this letter is written with regards to both of them.
In September 2022, David and Sarah returned to Oakland in order for him to assume the role of executive director of Death Penalty Focus, another nonprofit organization centered on criminal justice. This new leadership position of status and authority has increased the urgency of this letter.
[Editor’s Note, 7/20/23: David’s position as Executive Director of Death Penalty Focus ended in December 2022. Because this letter was signed and endorsed by so many individuals, it’s infeasible for us to update the language of the letter to reflect this or other changes. It will remain available online as an artifact of how things stood on 11/16/22.]
Much time and consideration was given to this collective statement, and it is our hope that it will be protective for our activist, movement, spiritual, social, and artistic communities: offering healing for those who organized with Sarah and David in the past and information for those who encounter them in the future.