IT’S GOING DOWN! National Prison Strike August 21st through September 9th


Tiny - Posted on 16 August 2018

Author: 
Bilal Mafundi Ali

IT’S GOING DOWN!  NATIONAL PRISON STRIKE AUGUST 21ST THROUGH SEPTEMBER 9TH.

”Let this nationwide strike be a wake-up, prisoners will destroy the crops, we will not comply, we will not allow you to exploit our families' hard-earned dollars anymore. Striking the match, let it go up in a blaze. We are humans! On behalf of the prisoners nationwide, we thank every supporter out there that's making our voices heard through their actions of solidarity. Stay vigilant, we will need you more than ever during the strike.” -  Jailhouse Lawyers Speak.

Men and women incarcerated in prisons across the nation declare a nationwide strike beginning on August 21st and extending through September 9th, in response to the riot in Lee Correctional Institution, a maximum security prison in South Carolina, this riot is being called the most deadly in decades.  Seven male inmates lost their lives during a senseless uprising that could have been avoided had the prison not been so overcrowded from the greed wrought by mass incarceration and a lack of respect for human life that is embedded in our nation’s penal ideology. These men and women are demanding humane living conditions, access to rehabilitation, sentencing reform and the end of modern day slavery.

In a salute to Black August Month, the strikes begins on August 21st (This date commemorates the assassination of Black Panther Party, Field Marshall, and prison activist, George Jackson, by San Quentin prison guards)

Over the past decade, a wave of prison rebellions has swept the country, increasing in both frequency and intensity. In September 2016 the largest coordinated national prisoner strike occurred in facilities around the country. These rebellions prove time and time again that caging and torturing humans is violence and will be resisted by those locked up by the system. Prisoner resistance demonstrates that instead of solving the crisis of capitalism, prisons themselves are the crisis.

Retaliation of the state - Federal and state authorities are on high alert across the nation. Pre-emptive repression tactics have already been initiated to silence visible prisoners that have influence who have vocally supported the August 21st call. This includes those less-known figures to the public. Prisoners are reporting in a few states that wardens are openly making threats to prisoners of consequences if they participate in the nationwide strike. Even with the authorities threatening, prisoners are ready for action.

It’s important to be very clear about why our sisters and brothers behind enemy lines have decided to wage resistance against an institution born out of slavery that this nation must come to grips with and address. South Carolina is only a reflection of the issues facing other states and governmental buildings of confinement.   Prisoners aren’t striking simply because the circumstances that their living in are mildly uncomfortable. They’re striking because the circumstances that they’re forced to live in are unbearably and innately abusive and no human being should live in a state of constant repression or abuse:

THE FOLLOWING DEMANDS HAVE BEEN FORTH BY PRISONERS WHO ARE LEADING AND ORGANIZING THE NATION PRISON STRIKE AND THE MANNER THEY’LL CONDUCT THE STRIKE

Immediate improvements to the conditions of prisons and prison policies that recognize the humanity of imprisoned men and women.

An immediate end to prison slavery. All persons imprisoned in any place of detention under United States jurisdiction must be paid the prevailing wage in their state or territory for their labor.

The Prison Litigation Reform Act must be rescinded, allowing imprisoned humans a proper channel to address grievances and violations of their rights.

The Truth in Sentencing Act and the Sentencing Reform Act must be rescinded so that imprisoned humans have a possibility of rehabilitation and parole. No human
shall be sentenced to Death by Incarceration or serve any sentence without the possibility of parole.

An immediate end to the racial overcharging, over-sentencing, and parole denials of Black and brown humans. Black humans shall no longer be denied parole because the victim of the crime was white, which is a particular problem in southern states.

An immediate end to racist gang enhancement laws targeting Black and brown humans.

No imprisoned human shall be denied access to rehabilitation programs at their place of detention because of their label as a violent offender.

State prisons must be funded specifically to offer more rehabilitation services.

Pell grants must be reinstated in all US states and territories.

The voting rights of all confined citizens serving prison sentences, pretrial detainees, and so-called “ex-felons” must be counted. Representation is demanded. All voices count.

OUR SISTERS AND BROTHERS IN PRISONS ACROSS THE NATION WILL STRIKE IN THE FOLLOWING MANNER:

WORK STRIKES: Prisoners will not report to assigned jobs. Each place of detention will determine how long its strike will last. Some of these strikes may translate
into a local list of demands designed to improve conditions and reduce harm within the prison.

SIT-INS: In certain prisons, men and women will engage in peaceful sit – in protests.

BOYCOTTS: All spending should be halted. We ask those outside the walls not to make financial judgments for those inside. Men and women on the in side will inform you if they are participating in this boycott.

HUNGER STRIKES: Men and women shall refuse to eat.

No individual on this planet should be placed into an environment that’s violent, deadly, abusive or oppressive regardless of the behaviors that they engaged in in the past. Prisoners are striking because this is their daily reality and it has been for centuries and they want to see this change for the better of, not only themselves, for the benefit all the communities that they belong to. Inmates are striking because not only are the environments that their forced to live in are innately oppressive and violent but because their conditions repress rehabilitation and evoke violence. They want to be in an environment that praises their social, educational and emotional development and we should support them out of love.

The Bay Area National Prison Strike Solidarity Committee is organizing a Mobilization and Call to Action on August 25, 2018, at San Quentin State Prison, with the objective of raising awareness of the inhumane conditions, treatment and policies that afflict those held in these gulags throughout amerikkka.  We are also mobilizing to let these sisters and brothers being held behind enemy lines know that we on the outside have their backs and that we support their Demands and the ongoing historic prison movement for human rights, led and organized by those being held captive in amerikkka’s gulags.

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