More about SHUTEMDOWN: Jailhouse Lawyers Speak is calling on organizations and coalitions to host demonstrations around the country that highlight historic and current struggles of incarcerated people and call for abolition of the prison industrial complex. The demonstrations are set to take place on August 21st, the anniversary of George Jackson’s assassination, and on September 9th, the anniversary of the uprisings at Attica.
Two weeks ago AbolishMKE broke a story about cell searches at the Racine prison (RCI) preceding new COVID cases and a quarantine. We sent the story to reporters (only Wisconsin Examiner seems to have picked it up) and asked readers to contact DOC officials demanding an end to cell searches, or “shakedowns.”
Sarah Cooper, head of the Division of Adult Institutions (DAI) responded instead with more and worse shakedowns. According to a message from someone held at RCI, staff pulled everyone out of their cells at 9:30pm on March 5 for a surprise shakedown. Captives were brought to the gym and forced to sit together on the bleachers “thigh to thigh” for two hours while guards went through the cell block touching everyone’s property. Continue reading “Sarah Cooper’s COVID Spreader Shakedowns”
For the second winter in a row, people held at Columbia CI have defended themselves against the daily violence of incarceration in that facility. We do not know many details yet, but we’re hearing that on Dec 30 and 31, three staff were severely beaten. The preceding incidents for these specific assaults remain unreported at this time, but we do know that prison is a site of daily violence and dehumanization, and in the face of these events, we affirm our belief that any act of resistance by any incarcerated person against staff is always an act of defense. Our message to DOC guards is simple: if you do not want to get hurt at your job, do not take a job based on routinely hurting people. Eventually, someone will fight back.
Wisconsin prison boss Kevin Carr has both publicly and privately requested that prisoner advocates and anti-prison organizers help him expand funding for programming and mental health treatment in the DOC’s budget.