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:


Thursday, September 29, 2011

Another chance for the Second Chance Act

Signed into law on April 9, 2008, the Second Chance Act (P.L. 110-199) was designed to improve outcomes for people returning to communities from prisons and jails. This first-of-its-kind legislation authorizes federal grants to government agencies and nonprofit organizations to provide employment assistance, substance abuse treatment, housing, family programming, mentoring, victims support, and other services that can help reduce recidivism.

Please contact your senators today.

More can be found at the National Reentry Resource Center


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Dear Second Chance Act Advocates,

Recently, the Senate eliminated funding for the Second Chance Act in their version of the FY 12 funding bill for the Department of Justice. In July, the House Appropriations Committee provided $70 million in their fiscal year 2012 Commerce, Justice, Science Appropriations bill.
Although funding was eliminated in the Senate bill, there is still time to restore funding for the program when the House and Senate Appropriations Committees attempt to resolve differences between the two spending bills. It is crucial that the field respond quickly with letters to the Hill to ensure that the Second Chance Act is funded in FY 2012.

The Second Chance Act passed with overwhelming bipartisan support and was signed into law in April 2008. It is a common sense, evidence-based approach to improving outcomes for people returning to communities from prisons and jails. This first-of-its-kind legislation authorizes federal grants to government agencies and nonprofit organizations to provide employment assistance, substance abuse treatment, housing, family programming, mentoring, victims support, and other services that can help reduce recidivism.

HERE’S HOW YOU CAN HELP:

1. Please contact your members of Congress and send a letter of support by visiting http://www.capwiz.com/csgjusticectr/home/. If you would like to personalize your letter with examples from your state or community, please email Jay Nelson at jnelson@csg.org for a MS Word version of the sample letter.

2. Sign the national sign-on letter <http://councilofstategovernmentsjusticecenter.createsend5.com/t/r/l/tdvhkk/jityihidy/d/> in support of Second Chance Act funding by contacting jnelson@csg.org

3. Visit the Justice Center/Reentry Policy Council page at http://www.reentrypolicy.org/government_affairs/second_chance_act to access talking points, fact sheets, list of Second Chance Act grantees and additional information.

4. Share this information and ask your colleagues and friends to help protect funding for the Second Chance Act.

TIMING

The Senate and House are working on FY12 funding now, so it is imperative that you contact your Members of Congress as soon as possible.

Thank you for your continued support for the Second Chance Act. Together, we can show Congress the need to continue funding for this important program that improves the lives of people returning prisons, jails, and juvenile facilities.

Jamal (Jay) Nelson

Government Affairs

Council of State Governments Justice Center

4630 Montgomery Ave., Suite 650

Bethesda, MD 20814

240.482.8580 (direct)

www.justicecenter.csg.org

The Council of State Governments Justice Center is a national nonprofit organization that serves policymakers at the local, state, and federal levels from all branches of government. It provides
practical, nonpartisan advice and consensus-driven strategies—informed by available evidence—to increase public safety and strengthen communities.

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