The How We endUP Convening is a gathering of advocates, activists, researchers, policymakers, and leaders from different communities, agencies, and efforts coming together to explore how we can dismantle harmful, racist systems and build different ways of caring for one another.

This year, we hope you leave ready to practice resistance in your own communities.

The upEND Movement’s “How we endUP Convening” is designed to empower and enlighten attendees as they journey towards the abolition of the family policing system. Our goal is to foster a deeper understanding of what it truly means to engage in abolition work on a daily basis. Through thought-provoking panel discussions and opportunities to coalition build, we aim to equip participants with some of the knowledge, tools, and inspiration needed to contribute to the vital cause of dismantling the family policing system while simultaneously building well-resourced and sustainable communities of care. At the “How we endUP Convening,” we’ll envision a world where families are liberated from the unjust clutches of family policing. Join us as we come together to learn, share, and take meaningful action toward a more just and equitable future for all families.


Houston, TX + Virtual
Oct 17, 8:30 AM – 7:00 PM CDT





8:30 AM – 9:30 AM

Breakfast will be provided for in-person attendees.


Morning Session with Root + Yoke Wellness 

9:30 AM – 10:30 AM

Featured Speakers: Jotina Buck 

Our morning session for in-person attendees will feature a grounding moment from Jotina Buck of Root + Yoke Wellness. Jotina Buck (she/her) is a black queer female licensed professional counselor, 200 hr. registered yoga teacher, meditation and breathwork guide. She is the owner and founder the first and only black, queer, female-owned integrative mental health practice in central Houston, Root + Yoke Wellness. Jotina has over 15 years of experience studying psychology and human behavior.



Keynote Conversation with Josie Duffy Rice & Alan Dettlaff 

11:00 AM – 12:30 PM – Livestream

Featured Speakers:  Josie Duffy Rice, Alan Dettlaff

Join renowned journalist, writer, and podcast host, Josie Duffy Rice, as she engages in a thought-provoking dialogue with Alan J. Detlaff, scholar, author, passionate abolitionist and cofounder of upEND Movement. Detlaff’s new book, Confronting the Racist Legacy of the American Child Welfare System will serve as the centerpiece of their discussion. Drawing from his extensive and collaborative research around the origins of Black family separations in the U.S., Josie and Alan will delve into the history of the family policing system, its current harmful impact on Black families, and our need to dismantle family policing while simultaneously building communities of care where families stay together and thrive.


Book Signing with Alan Dettlaff 

12:30 PM – 1:00 PM 

Books will be available for purchase from our local bookstore partner, Kindred Stories.



12:30 PM – 1:30 PM 

A lunch buffet will be provided for in-person attendees.



We Call it Family Policing: The Language of Liberation 

1:30 PM – 2:30 PM – Livestream

Featured Speakers: connease warren, Sydnie Mares, Takara Pierce, Kirsten West Savali

This panel will explore how we can all take ownership of the language of liberation, resist co-opting of our messaging, and the importance of rejecting the language the state has given us.


How We Win: Lessons Learned from Policy Changers

3:00 PM – 4:00 PM – Livestream

Featured Speakers: Shanta Trivedi, Carrington Buze, Tara Urs

This panel will delve into the nuanced realm of policy assessment and implementation, exploring the intricate art of distinguishing reformist measures from true abolitionist steps and how they engage in decision-making. This panel will discuss the strategies they have used to achieve policy wins that move us toward a more equitable and just society without family policing.


Start Where You Are: #StopCopCity, Abortion Doulas, and Community Gardens  

4:30 PM – 5:30 PM – Livestream

Featured Speakers: Maya Pendleton, Ash Williams, Micah Herskind, Erica Hubbard, Mellissa

State surveillance and the threat of state violence are everyday occurrences for Black, immigrant, and Native communities living in the United States. Various forms of abolitionist movements exist in response to state violence, demanding that our society end state oppression and build together institutions and communities of care that sustain well-being and guarantee liberation. While these movements have different focuses–ending policing, ending reproductive oppression, ending prisons, ending the family policing system–they are explicitly connected. And in real time, these movements are practiced in ways that circumvent and prevent state harm. This panel will discuss how seemingly disparate abolitionist movements are interconnected and how we practice abolition in real time–the work being done now to move us closer to liberation.


Wine & Appetizers 

6:00 PM – 7:00 PM 

After the convening, wine and appetizers will be provided for attendees to build relationships and decompress.