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Jan 5, 20

#J6: Call for Emergency Phone Zap in Response to Desperate Crisis and Bloodshed In Mississippi Prisons

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Call for a day long phone zap campaign to pressure the Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC) and the Mississippi Governor to take action against horrific conditions which have led to a wave of deadly violence.

Facebook Call-In Event HERE

There is an emergency situation inside Mississippi prisons right now. As a direct result of the now notorious hellish conditions of overcrowding, filth, medical neglect, suicides and more, this past week has seen a wave of deadly violence and a statewide lockdown.

From a comrade:

#MDOC is framing the narrative like this: gang violence inside the prisons is the problem. We reject that narrative, full stop. This is a system failure resulting in human and civil rights abuses perpetrated by #Mississippi policymakers who have failed us in reforming and resourcing the prison system despite months, if not years, of cries for those resources and reform.

The State of Mississippi is violating the 8th Amendment of the US Constitution which states, “Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.”

There are multiple reports of guards being complicit and popping doors to set off retaliations [purposely opening cell doors to let rival groups of prisoners attack each other] within Parchman Prison which has seen the worst of the carnage. A minimum of 5 prisoners have been killed this week with reports from inside claiming more. The calls for disclosure coming from distraught families are being ignored by MDOC.

Families, supporters, and prisoners inside are urgently calling for support. Those in charge and holding the keys need to feel the pressure and feel our eyes on them. Prisoners have communicated that three demands are to be prioritized. They are listed below in the sample script provided for phone calls and emails.

Call and Email These Targets Monday:

Governor-elect Tate Reeves
(601)359-3200
[email protected]

MDOC Director Pelicia Hall
(601) 359-5900

Sample Script:

Hello. I am calling as a concerned citizen about the ongoing crisis at Parchman. The Board of Directors must ensure that the superintendent find an amicable and peaceful solution, as well as, address the prisoners needs. They need to ensure that the prisoners have sanitary and safe housing conditions. We, as a community, along with the prisoners have these demands:

1. Immediate separation of all rival groups to halt the violence.
2. Restore full food service and immediate emergency medical care.
3. Removal of the corrupt guards who instigated violence.
Remember, the world is watching. Thank you.”

They may shut down numbers over the course of the day or hang up on you. Don’t worry. Every call counts and them giving you the run-around is typical behavior. If calls go to voicemail, let’s fill up their inbox.

You don’t have to give your name if they ask. Just keep on them and make sure you get your message across and tie up their phones. Remember: we aren’t here to argue with employees of the system but to disrupt their office operations and show power.

Please report back with any feedback or information in the comments section here or send us and email at [email protected]

Alma Dunning, mother of Lucious Bolton, holds a photo of her son in front of the house where Bolton grew up in Moss Point, Mississippi, on August 31st, 2018, Jonathan Bachman / for NBC News. This human rights crisis inside is constant and systemic. Lucius Bolton suffered ‘death by incarceration’ along with 15 others in the deadly month of August 2018.

For additional coverage and information on the situation in Mississippi prisons:

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Oakland IWOC

The Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee supports prisoners’ efforts to build their own labor union and organize for their own self-defense against inhumane treatment. We function as a liaison, building bridges between inside and outside to support prisoners organizing their local chapters. We advocate the abolition of incarceration, white supremacy, and capitalism.

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