2021 Collective Network

Community Alternatives to Incarceration and Policing Request for Proposals

The Seattle Office for Civil Rights (SOCR) is seeking applications for the 2021 Collective Network: Community Alternatives to Incarceration and Policing Request for Proposal (RFP). The RFP is for organizations and coalitions to build capacity that supports alternatives to and addresses the harm created by the carceral state, which includes all the formal institutions of the criminal legal system and immigration system. A total of $1 million will be available to fund two to four applications. 

Application Materials and Guidance:

Information Session

Screenshot of information session presentation for the 2021 Collective Network: Community Alternatives to Incarceration and Policing. Click on image for video link.


This funding originated from community advocacy for investments in alternatives to incarceration. Most recently known is the work organized by Ending the Prison Industrial Complex (EPIC) and Budget for Justice (BFJ).

In 2015, community-based organizations and coalitions, including Youth Undoing Institutional Racism (YUIR), EPIC, No New Youth Jail Campaign (NNYJ), The People's Institute for Survival and Beyond (PISAB), and European Dissent, engaged in campaigns that supported a vision of a City free of incarceration. This included organized resistance against the building of a new King County youth jail. As a result of community organizing, on September 21, 2015, the Seattle City Council unanimously passed a resolution for zero use of detention for youth. The goal of this resolution is to make Seattle a city where detention or imprisonment is obsolete. To support community efforts and help make this resolution a meaningful reality, EPIC organized the City of Seattle to allocate $500,000 back to communities most targeted by the prison industrial complex and mass incarceration.

In 2018, advocates with Budget for Justice (BFJ) called on the City to realign its criminal legal system funding priorities. As a result of this and other organizing efforts, the City Council added $1.08 million to SOCR's 2020 budget (thus doubling the original EPIC investment) to fund community-based organizations in Seattle supporting alternatives to or addressing harm created by the criminal legal system.

Scope of Work

The selected organizations/coalitions will work to build a community owned and self-sustaining collective network. Applicants should provide applications that address both capacity building and alternatives to the carceral state, and include the following:

Capacity Building

  • Demonstrate the ability to maintain and strengthen authentic relationships.
  • Prioritize meeting the self-defined needs or goals of Black families and other individuals and communities most impacted by the carceral state.
  • Build capacity for folks to become a part of the collective network and continue to shift resources to community to create and define safety for themselves.
  • Provide capacity building for the collective network. Examples of capacity building may include, but are not limited to meals, teach-ins, healing practices, basic needs, community connection, workshops, trainings, listening sessions, and leadership development for organizers and families.

Alternatives to the Carceral State

  • The collective network will explore responses to the harms created by the carceral state and/or develop transformative approaches to community crises, including COVID-19. Examples of proposals could include a blueprint, set of recommendations, People's Plan (i.e., community-owned plan of research, organizing, and implementation), or an organizing strategy. Applications should address:
    • A community owned response to safety and health; and/or The ability to create/develop a variety of healing centered practices aimed at repairing the harms created by systems of oppression that make communities vulnerable.

Priority Applicants

We encourage joint applications and collaboration between organizations/coalitions. We are prioritizing applications from organizations/coalitions that will show:

  • They are led by individuals impacted by the carceral state;
  • A strong connection to the priority and focus population, including the Black transgender community and the broader Black community;
  • A commitment to building power in the community and/or supporting healing from the impact of oppression;
  • A commitment to address internalized oppression and affirming all identities and values ending all forms of oppression, which include ableism, homophobia, transphobia, and misogyny;
  • Sustained accountable relationships with individuals most impacted by the carceral state;
  • Sustained accountable relationships with organizations/coalitions supporting individuals most impacted by the carceral state and engaged in movement building;
  • and Sustained and continued commitment to work in collaboration with other organizations/coalitions led by Black, Indigenous, and communities of color; uplifting BIPOC queer and transgender leadership to build a strong collective network.


Application packets are due by 11:59 p.m. on Monday, October 4. Please submit all applications via email to john.page@seattle.gov. Applications and application materials submitted after the due date and time will not be considered.

We encourage joint applications and collaboration between organizations/coalitions.

Technical Assistance

Technical assistance is available to all applicants that have an operating budget of $2 million or less in the fiscal year prior to applying. An outside consultant will provide the technical assistance. Technical Assistance may include help to frame your approach and application, and assistance with budgeting, reviewing application drafts, and with submission. Please contact John Page to make a request or to learn more about this technical assistance. Please request technical assistance at least 14 business days prior to the RFP's closing date.

For questions related to this RFP, including application materials and requests for technical assistance, please contact john.page@seattle.gov or (206) 817-9318


Yasmin Habib
Habib Consulting, LLC

J Mase III
The Black Trans Prayer Book 
poet@jmaseiii.com, (760) 856-0568


 Friday, 8/27/2021  RFP posted and released
 Wednesday, 9/1/2021, 5:30 - 7:30pm  Information Session
 Meeting link: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/86199842773?pwd=T3FhY1NiWEFwRDR5Q01JRkhDYVByZz09
 Meeting ID: 861 9984 2773 
 Passcode: Contact for passcode
 Monday, 10/4/2021  Written applications due
 Wednesday, 10/20/2021 - Wednesday, 10/27/2021  Conduct virtual interviews, as applicable
 Friday, 12/10/2021  Planned award notification
 Friday, 4/22/2022  Contract start date

2021 Collective Network RFP FAQ

What do the reporting requirements look like for those who successfully get this grant?

The reporting requirements (and outcomes) will be developed, as part of the contract negotiation process, with each individual organization/group that is selected to be awarded funding. Typically, reports will be submitted monthly along with invoices. 

Are we able to budget up to a million dollars, or is it $1 million total that is being distributed through this grant?

The total amount of available funds is $1 million and we are seeking to fund 2-4 applications/proposals. Applications/proposals that are selected to be awarded funding will be notified of the amount of funding they will be allocated to receive through this funding process. 

Is this RFP funding for one-time or is it multi-year funding?

The funding for this RFP (2021 Collective Network: Community Alternatives to Incarceration and Policing) process is one-time funding. The City's investment strategy of Community Alternatives to Incarceration and Policing is ongoing funding. However, each year a new RFP will be developed and released to the community and organizations will have to submit an application/proposal to be considered for funding, whether they were previously awarded funding or not.