‘Orange Is the New Black’ offers fans a way to give back
NEW YORK — The Netflix series “Orange Is the New Black” isn’t content with leaving behind a legacy of good television. It wants to do good in the real world, too.
The series’ creative team said Thursday it has formed a fund that will support advocacy groups pressing for criminal justice reform and women re-entering society from prison, protect immigrants’ rights and end mass incarceration.
The fund, named in honor of show character Poussey Washington, will spread out every donation equally to eight already-existing nonprofit groups. The announcement comes on the eve of the Friday premiere of the series’ seventh and final season.
Washington, an inmate portrayed by actress Samira Wiley, is a fan favorite whose sudden death at the hands of officers in the fourth season stunned many viewers and was a nod to the recent cases of African-Americans killed in police custody.
Wiley said she’s honored to have the fund named after her character and happy to have the show embrace real social responsibility.
“It’s just a TV show, at the end of the day, but it’s changing people’s minds and hopefully with this fund it will be changing people’s lives — getting them the education that they need, getting them the health care and the mental health care that they might need,” she said.