Filed under: Action, Incarceration, Midwest, Political Prisoners
Submitted to It’s Going Down
This afternoon 35 protesters marched around Waupun Correctional Institution (WCI) in downtown Waupun WI to protest the Wisconsin Department of Correction’s (WI DOC) use of indefinite solitary confinement and to spread the word about an upcoming nation-wide prisoner protest movement that will begin on September 9, 2016.
“The DOC has been force-feeding our friends for more than 50 days now, three times a day. There is no reason to shove a tube down someone’s nose three times a day other than to hurt them and coerce them into giving up their protest. We won’t let Secretary Litscher’s goons torture our friends anymore.” Said march participant Chance Zombor.
The Dying to Live Hunger strike started on June 7 and within 10 days WI DOC had acquired court authorization to force feed the prisoners. Two prisoners, Cesar DeLeon and LaRon McKinley have remained steadfast in their protest despite the force feedings, “We ain’t taking anything voluntarily until we accomplish our objective, which is to put a one year cap on the use of administration confinement (long term solitary confinement).” Cesar DeLeon wrote in a letter dated July 27.
Today’s solidarity action was called for by Milwaukee IWOC, the Incarcerated Worker’s Organizing Committee of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW). IWOC has been expanding the militant labor union’s activities into combating prison slavery and conditions of confinement for incarcerated people.
The protesters carried banners expressing solidarity with the hunger strikers, condemning force feeding and solitary confinement. They chanted, beat drums and made a lot of noise, hoping that the prisoners would be able to hear them through the prison’s walls. They promoted their action through social media using #DyingToLiveWI.
They also carried banners promoting the September 9 national prisoner strike, which was called for by prisoners across the country and which IWOC has been supporting. Milwaukee IWW members have vowed to continue pressuring the DOC “until our fellow worker’s demands are met and Wisconsin truly ends the barbaric practice of long term solitary confinement.”
Beahm is a guard at Waupun CI who assaults #DyingToLiveWI hunger strikers during force feedings. This is his house. pic.twitter.com/d6F76ovRK6
— IWOC (@IWW_IWOC) August 13, 2016
Photos and videos of the march are available for download and free public use. Photographer and video credit should go to Amy Turk.