Xochitl is a queer, Chicana/Latina organizer, lawyer, educator and movement builder with over 15 years of experience in grassroots organizing, media and policy advocacy, and training and technical assistance, mostly focused on ending criminalization in Black and Latino communities. Xochitl has experience working in diverse communities in California, New York, Louisiana, and Georgia.
Her past experience includes co-directing Families and Friends of Louisiana’s Incarcerated Children (FFLIC) a statewide, membership-based organization building the power of the parents of incarcerated youth in Louisiana to fight for justice for their children and families; and co-founding and directing Safe Streets/Strong Communities, an organization born post-Katrina, dedicated to transforming the criminal justice system of New Orleans.
Prior to this, Xochitl was a Soros U.S. Justice Fellow working with Grassroots Leadership to implement southern strategies for radical criminal justice reform by linking community organizing and the law. She has also worked as a juvenile defender in the Bronx and a media strategist with We Interrupt This Message.
Racial Justice Action Center Director of Decarceration Strategies
Che Johnson-Long believes that all jails should close.
As an organizer, she has worked for 11 years to decrease the funding, power, and legitimacy of police and jails and instead increase safety, resources, and sovereignty for communities directly impacted by state violence. As a trauma healer, she teaches politicized somatics to support movement leadership that is loving, connected, and disciplined. As a security trainer, she supports organizations to protect against attacks from state sponsored and inter-community violence.
Some of the groups she has been a part of include: the Audre Lorde Project, Vision Change Win, Generative Somatics, Atlanta/Fulton County Pre-Arrest Diversion Initiative, and Solutions Not Punishment (SNaPCo). Che is currently the Director of Decarceration Strategies with the Racial Justice Action Center and is also in law school. She lives in Atlanta with roots in Oahu, HI, and is grateful to be transformed by this work.