Abusing Prisoners Decreases Public Safety: An Interview with Educator, Author and Former Prisoner Shawn Griffith
This new book’s thoughtful analysis and chilling reflections on what author Shawn Griffith experienced while incarcerated is a remarkable illustration of why the US public must listen to the voices of current and former prisoners who have stories that only they can tell. Griffith writes that “by integrating my own personal experiences with statistics and examples from different corrections systems around the nation, I am attempting to discredit the general perception that the system is designed to enforce and protect justice for everyone."
By Mathew Kagis - April 4, 2013
After an eight month process that was at times nonexistent and at other times exhausting, traumatic and triggering, I am left with two distinct impressions...The police still hold the thin blue line and will bend over backwards to protect their own...The criminalization of dissent continues unabated and remains the order of the day.
By Clay Nikiforuk - April 1, 2013
What do you do when you're detained by powerful officials, everything you say is presumed deceptive, arbitrary "evidence" is held against you, and you're treated like a moral deviant? And what if its 2013, you're a woman, and the "evidence" is that you possess condoms?...It happened three times in two weeks -- being detained by U.S. border officials on my way to or through the States.
By Ken Stone - Sat Feb 16 2013
[The Canadian Security and Intelligence Service] was...found complicit by a royal commission in the illegal rendition by the U.S. government of Maher Arar, a Canadian citizen, to Syria. Investigations of CSIS complicity in the illegal rendition of other Canadians are pending. Child soldier Omar Khadr was tortured in Guantanamo Bay partly on CSIS’ instigation. CSIS even spied on postal union leaders during a 1991 strike.
Strategizing to Defeat Control Unit Prisons and Solitary Confinement: An Interview with Author/Activist Nancy Kurshan
Author and longtime activist Nancy Kurshan’s new book, entitled Out of Control: A Fifteen Year Battle Against Control Unit Prisons, has just been released by the Freedom Archives. Kurshan’s book documents the work of The Committee to End the Marion Lockdown (CEML), which she co-founded in 1985 as a response to the lockdown at the federal prison in Marion, Illinois. It quickly turned into a broader campaign against control unit prisons and human rights violations in US prisons that lasted fifteen years, until 2000.
By Alex Hundert - February 11, 2013
On the evening of January 21st, I was brought back to the hole. Not on misconduct this time, but to what is known as Administrative Segregation because the Security Manager has decided that having me on range...constitutes a threat to security...I have not been provided with any basis for being removed from general population aside from the vague notion of security measures, nor have I been given any justification for being stripped of any of my so-called privileges.
By Laura Delano - January 29, 2013
My parents did what millions of American parents have been taught to do: they saw how much emotional pain I was in, and they sought “help” for me in the “mental health” system. They had no idea that my entrance into a psychiatrist’s office as a young teenager would end up stripping me of my health, my hope, and my sense of Self...[I]ndeed, as the result of being “shielded from harm” by the “mental health” system, I experienced more harm than I could have ever imagined for myself.
Last week, the "Dismantling Racism" class from St. Catherine University in Minnesota was taken on a Black Panther History Tour in Oakland and Berkeley, led by Billy X Jennings from It's About Time BPP Alumni & Legacy...An important friend and ally of the International Coalition to Free the Angola 3, Billy X Jennings' work was previously spotlighted in an interview with Angola 3 News, entitled "We Called Ourselves the Children of Malcolm."
Threats in the name of His Royal Highness, a car rammed into our house, and menacing phone-calls to our children – This all happened to my wife and I following a meeting we had back in 2005 with journalists from the Guardian at their office in Manchester, England.
By Frida Berrigan - January 10, 2013
It was a tough trip. We listened to story after story after story. We wept endlessly. We were reminded again and again of the hundreds of millions of dollars in economic, military and political support doled out by Washington over the decades to repressive oligarchs in Guatemala City. We heard about human rights violations and crimes carried out by Guatemalan soldiers trained at the U.S. School of the Americas. We visited modest monuments inscribed with the names of men, women and children slaughtered by government-backed death squads.
By DAVID MACARAY - Counterpunch
I once worked with two schizophrenic men. When I say “worked with,” I don’t simply mean I was employed by the same company as they, or that I vaguely knew them. I mean that I had occasion to work side-by-side with each of them for several weeks, as part of a five-man production crew in a manufacturing plant (a paper mill, actually).
For the second year in a row, anarchists and our friends in Southern Ontario went on a New Year's Eve anti-prison road trip. Starting off at Grand Valley Institution for Women in Kitchener, about 60 of us set off fireworks and called out greetings to the women inside; many of whom happened to be out on the yard or were able to open their windows and send some noise back our way.
By Mary Ann Swissler - AlterNet
Women are more likely to suffer from depression and anxiety than men and are more likely to attempt suicide...“And those disorders are much more likely to persist in women”...[Film-maker Lucy] Winer['s]...experience was part of the massive “warehousing” of people living with mental illness which ended with deinstitutionalization in the 1970s — one massive failure replaced with a string of broken promises to provide community and family support. Instead, patients were unceremoniously discharged out into a society that was unprepared for their medical and social needs.
By Mandy Hiscocks - November 29, 2012
The inquiry into the death of Ashley Smith in a Federal Penitentiary five years ago has been shining a much needed light on policy and procedure at Correctional Services Canada, and on the behaviour and attitudes of some of the people it employs...Ashley Smith needed help, and instead was treated brutally by people she couldn't get away from -- this is the situation for so many others as well.
By Ann Hansen - Media Co-op
Ann Hansen is a former member of Direct Action, an underground anarchist group active in the 1980s, who presently lives as a writer, farmer and public speaker in the Kingston area. On August 3, 2012, Ann was arrested and had her parole suspended for ‘unauthorized associations and political activity’ in the context of growing anti-prison organizing in Kingston, Canada’s prison capital...On October 30, the Parole Board canceled her parole suspension and released her on stricter conditions. This is her first public statement regarding her arrest and imprisonment.