Tag Archives: michigan

Kinross Coverage

kinrossInformation is just now beginning to escape from Kinross Correctional Facility in northern Michigan, where one of the larger, more inspiring strike actions occurred on September 9. Retaliation by MDOC officials has been severe and violent. Three prisoners have turned up dead under suspicious circumstances. Find links to news reports and coverage below, and updates at https://www.facebook.com/Michigan-for-Prison-Abolition-585834328095870

Local organizations have connected and coordinated with National Lawyers Guild and IWOC as well as family members and the prisoners to get more information out and to build an effective response to the state’s violence and refusal to release information. Continue reading

Peacefully Marching Prisoners Tear Gassed, Zip-Tied, Left Out in Rain in Retaliation

midocPRESS RELEASE Friday, October 7, 2016 Contact: Duncan Tarr, 313-409-8615, miprisonabolition@gmail.com

Peacefully Marching Prisoners Tear Gassed, Zip-Tied, Left Out in Rain in Retaliation

KINCHELOE, MI – More than two weeks after prisoners at Kinross Correctional Facility participated in a nationwide prison workers’ strike, the prisoners’ own accounts of what happened are beginning to emerge. Prisoners report that the facility was on lockdown from September 10 to the morning of September 22, preventing communication with their outside supporters.

Most prisoners, including kitchen staff, did not report for work on September 9 in conjunction with the nationwide work stoppage. The following morning between 400 and 500 prisoners marched peacefully in the yard. The deputy wardens came to the prisoners who communicated their grievances, including low wages, the commutation process, restrictive visitation room seating in violation of MDOC policy, high phone rates, poor quality and quantity of food provided by private contractor Trinity Services Group, the way the yard is run, living conditions that squeeze eight men into a room intended for four, no re-entry programs, no bleach for clothes, MP3 players that break easily and cannot be fixed or replaced, not enough room in the law library, not enough room in the visiting room causing some visitors to be turned away, and not being allowed to transfer to other facilities. Continue reading

‘Enough Is Enough’: Prisoners Across The Country Band Together To End Slavery For Good

From ThinkProgress.org

Jun 15, 2016 1:26 pm

CREDIT: Industrial Workers of the World

Siddique Hasan, a current prisoner at the Ohio State Penitentiary, types in his cell block.

Siddique Hasan, a self-described revolutionary from Savannah, Georgia, has been waiting for a moment like this one, when prisoners across the country band together and say “enough is enough” when it comes to being treated like a slave.

“It’s time for a broader struggle,” he told ThinkProgress during his daily phone time in Ohio’s supermax prison. “People have to lift up their voice with force and determination, and let them know that they’re dissatisfied with the way things are actually being run.”

So far this year, prisoners have been doing just that. Continue reading

“This was about unity”: A Wave of Protest Spreads Through the Michigan Prison System

foodOver the last month, thousands of prisoners at three different prisons in Michigan have taken part in mass protests against the conditions of their confinement and as a demonstration of their collective strength. Prisoners at Kinross Correctional Facility began the wave of protests on March 20th and 21st with 1,000 of the prison’s 1,300 prisoners refusing meals. The strike then spread to Chippewa Correctional Facility, also in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, on March 26th through 28th where at least 800 prisoners refused meals for the entire weekend. Then, on April 12th, prisoners at a third facility, the Cotton Correctional Facility, joined in with about 660 prisoners refusing meals. According to the media, the protests are sparked by problems with food quality, but according to the prisoner whose reportback is below, “this was about unity.”

According to the Detroit Free Press:

Both protests were characterized by extremely high participation rates among inmates, which disturbed Michigan Corrections Organization officials and also got the attention of the prisons’ administration, Gautz said. “It’s definitely something the facilities took seriously,” Gautz said. “It is unusual in a high school or a prison, because there are different groups or cliques that form, to have everybody on the same page. It takes some coordination.”

When the strike spread to a third facility, The Detroit Free press reported that the MDOC suspects that “the protest at Cotton may have been instigated by a prisoner who was transferred there for assaulting a prisoner who chose to go to the chow hall during an earlier food protest at Kinross Correctional Facility in the UP, Gautz said.” On March 20th, as at least 1,000 prisoners at Kinross were refusing meals, the MDOC had this to say:

These protests are happening simultaneously with work strikes in Texas prisons as well as ongoing resistance in Alabama prisons, which recently saw a series of riots at Holman Correctional and where prisoners are currently calling for a work stoppage on May 1st. All of this is happening in the lead up to a call by prisoners across the country for a national prison strike on September 9th, the anniversary of the Attica Rebellion. Continue reading