Fight the Treatment Industrial Complex

Fight the Treatment Industrial Complex by supporting the AFSC- Arizona campaign

Fight the Treatment Industrial Complex by supporting the AFSC- Arizona campaign
AFSC-Arizona staff are amazing advocates for prisoners - and as such, are true blessings to our communities. Spend time on their site - lots of resources.

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. collective@phoenixabc.org

until all are free -

MARGARET J PLEWS (June 1, 2015)
arizonaprisonwatch@gmail.com



AZ Prison Watch BLOG POSTS:


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Prosecuting People of Conscience.

 Let's show some solidarity with our brother, Friday, folks. Hook up with me for a ride.

Peg

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Let's gather in community with Josh the night before the court appearance for his November arrest at Ft. Huachuca, for music, refreshments and a roundtable discussion on why we need to continue to protest torture - April 22 at 7 p.m. at Southside Presbyterian Church (address below).  And if you're able, please come to court as well -

Ft. Huachuca protester Joshua Harris, from Santa Barbara, California, will appear on Friday, April 23 at 9:30 a.m. in U.S. District Court, Tucson, Arizona.  He intends to enter a change of plea and expects to be sentenced that day.

Josh was one of five protesters who entered Fort Huachuca (home of the U.S. Army Intelligence Center where interrogators are trained) on November 15, 2009 with a message for military personnel and civilian employees.  They carried a statement (see below) opposing the cruel treatment and abuse of detainees from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and calling for the civilian oversight of all military interrogation practices.  The statement also condemned the used of armed drones in warfare.

All five protesters were given a formal letter barring them from entering the base for a year.  Because Josh initially refused to identify himself, instead saying he was there representing a victim of torture, he was also charged with trespass and refusing to provide a truthful name.

Please join us:

Thursday evening, April 22 at 7 p.m.
Southside Presbyterian Church, Fellowship Hall
317 W. 23rd Street, Tucson, Arizona
Let's gather in community with Josh the night before his court appearance

Friday morning, April 23 at 8:30 a.m.
DeConcini U.S. Federal Courthouse, plaza in front of courthouse
405 W. Congress, Tucson, Arizona
Join Josh for an 8:30 a.m. circle of support before his 9:30 a.m. court appearance

Please note that you need a photo I.D. to get into the courthouse.  Cameras, pocketknives, etc. are not allowed in the courthouse.

For more information about past and future protests at Ft. Huachuca, please visit http://tortureontrial.org and http://southwestwitness.org/

The annual Ft. Huachuca demonstration will take place on Sunday, November 14, 2010.


STATEMENT CARRIED INTO FORT HUACHUCA, November 15, 2009

We return to Fort Huachuca to call for an end to torture.

We are here because we desire dialogue with soldiers and commanders engaged in interrogation training. We are here because we still question whether soldiers are provided with adequate training about international human rights law so they would know to refuse illegal orders and other pressure to torture captives (including a guarantee that speaking out would not lead to retaliation or punishment). We are here in the hope that healing can take place--healing for the victims of torture, as well as the men and women who have been involved in carrying out torture.

Because the Obama administration has failed to close Guantanamo and the U.S. continues to imprison and interrogate thousands of captives at military prisons in Afghanistan, Iraq and places unknown, we renew our call for civilian, human-rights centered oversight of all interrogation training and practice.

Ft. Huachuca is also implicated in the rapidly expanding, legally questionable and morally reprehensible use of remotely-piloted aircraft, or drones, as a weapon of war. We're told that currently the Army only trains for the operation and maintenance of reconnaissance and surveillance drones at Ft. Huachuca. But we also know that the Army plans to weaponize some of these same drones.

Drone attacks have killed many more innocent civilians in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and elsewhere, than alleged terrorists. The U.N. Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial Executions has asked whether the use of drones in targeting terrorists to be killed constitutes "arbitrary extrajudicial executions," or rogue assassinations in violation of international law. We are here today to call for an end to the use of armed drones in warfare. We believe this terrorizing and killing generates deep resentment in the region that incites hatred for the U.S., boosts recruitment for Taliban, Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups, and may spawn decades of retaliation.

We act in solidarity with the campaign to close the School of the Americas/Western Hemispheric Institute for Security Cooperation at Ft. Benning, Georgia, where the testimony of torture survivors has informed our outrage and moved us to action. We also act in solidarity with people in New York protesting the presence of Reaper drones at a NY Air National Guard base outside of Syracuse today.

Rogue assassinations and torture have damaged the soul of our nation and tarnished our image around the world. We know that a world without torture, without violence and without war is possible. We invite you to help us create that world.

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