August82013

SHU ISOLATION UNIT INSTALLATION ON THE STATE CAPITOL SOUTH STEPS, AUGUST 14

The Stop Mass Incarceration Network (SMIN), Assemblymember Tom Ammiano, California Families to Abolish Solitary Confinement (CFASC), and the National Religious Campaign Against Torture (NRCAT), in support of the California Prison Hunger Strikers and their Five Demands, invite the public to visit an installation of a life-sized mock Security Housing Unit (SHU) Cell on the California State Capitol South Steps in Sacramento from 8am to 8pm.
(*see below for carpool info)

What: Life-sized mock Security Housing Unit (SHU) Cell

Where: California State Capitol South Steps

When: Wednesday August 14 – 8 am to 8 pm &

12 noon press conference

with statements from prisoners’ families, hunger strike supporters, and human rights advocates, including Dr. Ron Ahnen, Professor of Politics, St Mary’s College*, President of California Prison Focus, Member of the Mediation Team; Dolores Canales of CFASC; UCB student Steven Czifra, formerly incarcerated in Pelican Bay SHU; Larry Everest, Revolution newspaper; Rev. Theon Johnson, III of Glide Memorial United Methodist Church; Rev. Alan Jones;  Laura Magnani, American Friends Service Committee and Member of Mediation Team; Marie Levin, sister of Ronnie Dewberry (Sitawa Jamaa) prisoner in the Pelican Bay SHU - one of the four main Short Corridor Representatives of the hunger strike; J. Tony Serra, 50 years as a criminal defense lawyer; and others TBA.


SMIN, Assemblymember Tom Ammiano,  and CFASC, in support of the California Prison Hunger Strikers and their 5 Demands invite the public to visit an installation of a life-sized mock Security Housing Unit (SHU) Cell on the California State Capitol South Steps in Sacramento.

The families, Assemblyperson Ammiano, and SMIN invite Jerry Brown and Jeffrey Beard to visit the “SHU” and to state why this is not torture.

*CARPOOL FROM MACARTHUR BART 8 AM. Ride co-ordinator - Call Diya at 415-509-2200 for rides from the Bay Area.
From Concord and vicinity,Call Joseph at 925-524-0272

Also people needed in Sac to do prep work on Tuesday call 510-926-5207 to be a part of this.

*GOING FROM LOS ANGELES:
A car caravan will be leaving the LA area at 2am Wednesday morning to get to Sacramento by 10am for SHU Isolation Unit (Day Long Event) and Press Conference at 12 noon on the State Capitol South Steps.  If you have a car and want to be part of the caravan, contact us and let us know.  If you are driving up yourselves, check in and let us know.  If you need a ride please RSVP as soon as possible (by Tuesday morning at latest) as there will be a van.

Time: Meet at 2am Wednesday morning (we will leave about 2:45am)
Place: Denny’s Restaurant
Address: 530 Ramirez St.  (At Vignes and 101 Frwy near Men’s Central Jail)
Contact: Keith James at 213-840-5348 or Dee at 424-981-9189

image

This stark multimedia installation will allow visitors to acquire a tactile and visceral understanding of the reality of solitary confinement that over 4,000 California prisoners have endured for years and decades, and why this is cruel and unusual punishment deemed torture by the UN and human rights groups.

The installation includes images of SHU cells and prisoners and moving testimony from prisoners and others.

On July 8, 2013, 30,000 California prisoners began a hunger strike to end the torture of solitary confinement and for their basic rights and humanity. Their central demand is “comply with the recommendation of the U.S. Commission on Safety and Abuse in Prisons (2006) regarding an end to long-term solitary confinement.” Now, 100’s of prisoners have gone over one month without food and many more in many prisons have supported the strike and gone on and off the hunger strike since its beginning. Millions throughout society support the prisoners, including prominent voices such as Jay Leno, Danny Glover, Cornel West, Noam Chomsky, Bonnie Raitt and Gloria Steinem; yet Governor Jerry Brown and the California Dept. of Corrections refuse to meet their just demands, have retaliated against the hunger strikers, and have publicly vilified the prisoners and the hunger strike. In a July 6 opinion piece in the Los Angeles Times, CDCR secretary Jeffrey Beard claimed that the notorious SHU “is not ‘solitary confinement.’”

On July 5, Amnesty International stated that “rather than improving,” conditions in California prisons “have actually significantly deteriorated:” On July 22, 2013, Amnesty International called California Prisons and the CDCR’s response to the hunger strike an “affront to human rights.”


The Stop Mass Incarceration Network states “This is an EMERGENCY! One hunger striker, Billy ‘Guero’ Sell, has already died. Many more people need to stand NOW with the prisoner hunger strikers!”

The families, Assemblyperson Ammiano, and SMIN invite Jerry Brown and Jeffrey Beard to visit the “SHU” and to state why this is not torture.

A hunger strike is not taken lightly by us, we are not suicidal, rather we hope to save lives. We may not be able to save our lives. But we have come to identify our existence in SHU as a conveyor belt leading into an oven of inferno. And we may indeed be strapped onto this conveyor belt with no way out as we have continued for years to watch our comrades fall into the abyss of the oven in psychosis, suicide or other chronic illness. And we may not be able to stop our ride from dropping us into the abyss but we will stop this conveyor belt for future generations to come. Today this ride stops!” (Excerpt from a letter to Prisoner Hunger Strike Solidarity Coalition by a prisoner dated July 8, 2013)

Stop Mass Incarceration Network

Mass Incarceration + Silence = Genocide

Page 1 of 1