Retiring Arizona Prison Watch...

This site was originally started in July 2009 as an independent endeavor to monitor conditions in Arizona's criminal justice system, as well as offer some critical analysis of the prison industrial complex from a prison abolitionist/anarchist's perspective. It was begun in the aftermath of the death of Marcia Powell, a 48 year old AZ state prisoner who was left in an outdoor cage in the desert sun for over four hours while on a 10-minute suicide watch. That was at ASPC-Perryville, in Goodyear, AZ, in May 2009.

Marcia, a seriously mentally ill woman with a meth habit sentenced to the minimum mandatory 27 months in prison for prostitution was already deemed by society as disposable. She was therefore easily ignored by numerous prison officers as she pleaded for water and relief from the sun for four hours. She was ultimately found collapsed in her own feces, with second degree burns on her body, her organs failing, and her body exceeding the 108 degrees the thermometer would record. 16 officers and staff were disciplined for her death, but no one was ever prosecuted for her homicide. Her story is here.

Marcia's death and this blog compelled me to work for the next 5 1/2 years to document and challenge the prison industrial complex in AZ, most specifically as manifested in the Arizona Department of Corrections. I corresponded with over 1,000 prisoners in that time, as well as many of their loved ones, offering all what resources I could find for fighting the AZ DOC themselves - most regarding their health or matters of personal safety.

I also began to work with the survivors of prison violence, as I often heard from the loved ones of the dead, and learned their stories. During that time I memorialized the Ghosts of Jan Brewer - state prisoners under her regime who were lost to neglect, suicide or violence - across the city's sidewalks in large chalk murals. Some of that art is here.

In November 2014 I left Phoenix abruptly to care for my family. By early 2015 I was no longer keeping up this blog site, save occasional posts about a young prisoner in solitary confinement in Arpaio's jail, Jessie B.

I'm deeply grateful to the prisoners who educated, confided in, and encouraged me throughout the years I did this work. My life has been made all the more rich and meaningful by their engagement.

I've linked to some posts about advocating for state prisoner health and safety to the right, as well as other resources for families and friends. If you are in need of additional assistance fighting the prison industrial complex in Arizona - or if you care to offer some aid to the cause - please contact the Phoenix Anarchist Black Cross at PO Box 7241 / Tempe, AZ 85281.

until all are free -

MARGARET J PLEWS (June 1, 2015)


ANTICOLONIAL zines, stickers, actions, power

Taala Hooghan Infoshop

Kinlani/Flagstaff Mutual AID


The group for direct action against the prison state!

Black Lives Matter PHOENIX METRO

Black Lives Matter PHOENIX METRO
(accept no substitutions)



PHOENIX: Trans Queer Pueblo


AZ Prison Watch BLOG POSTS:

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Arizona Budget Cuts: Democrats' Response

From Arizona Senate Democratic Caucus

Monday, November 23, 2009

Statement from Senate Democrats

Today, Senate Republicans voted to pass $300 million in cuts to education and social services and are now rushing to sign the cuts into law as the ink is still drying on the final copies of the bills.

Just a few months ago, Gov. Brewer vowed not to decimate education or services to the state’s most vulnerable. Yet, less than one hour after the end of the Fourth Special Session, Gov. Brewer will break that promise and continue to cement Arizona’s place as the worst state in the country for education funding and children’s services.

Resolving this financial crisis on the backs of children and the poor is not the way to solve our problems. The Republicans continue to refuse to put partisanship aside and work toward a solution that is best for the state. We need to work together to find a comprehensive solution that helps all of Arizona. For over a year now, Democrats have offered a number of complete budgets and revenue options that will solve our fiscal crisis. Yet those solutions continue to fall on deaf, ideologically driven ears.

SB 1001 and SB 1002 passed with only Republican votes and were signed by Gov. Brewer tonight. The bills cut $144 million from K-12 education for textbooks and classroom materials. The bills also cut $155 million from the Department of Economic Services, including services to developmentally disabled children and adults.

We continue to invite our Republican colleagues to negotiate with us a budget solution that benefits all Arizonans.

No comments: