Sumayyah Waheed

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Sumayyah Waheed leads Books Not Bars policy work, for the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights in Oakland California. She has a law degree.

She is involved[1]in crafting and tracking legislation and conducting extensive research to support the campaign's effort to reform the California juvenile justice system.


After working at the Family Violence Law Center and Equal Rights Advocates during law school, Sumayyah Waheed came to the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights on a fellowship after graduating. When her fellowship expired, Waheed joined the Center as a grassroots organizer. She served as one of the primary people responsible for leading Families for Books Not Bars, the only statewide network of families whose children are locked away in California youth prisons.