The 'Friends of Marcia Powell' are autonomous groups and individuals engaging in prisoner outreach, informal advocacy, and organized protest and direct actions in a sustained campaign to: promote prisoner rights and welfare in America; engage the Arizona public in a creative and thoughtful critique of our system of "justice;” deconstruct the prison industrial complex; and dismantle this racist, classist patriarchy...

Retiring "Free Marcia Powell"

As of December 2, 2010 (with occasional exceptions) I'm retiring this blog to direct more of my time and energy into prisoner rights and my other blogs; I just can't do anyone justice when spread so thin. I'll keep the site open so folks can search the archives and use the links, but won't be updating it with new posts. If you're looking for the latest, try Arizona Prison Watch. Most of the pieces posted here were cross-posted to one or both of those sites already.

Thanks for visiting. Peace out - Peg.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Solidarity with our South Bay Boston Sisters! RESIST!!

From: NEFAC-New England <>
Date: Sun, Apr 4, 2010 at 11:25 AM
Subject: Women in House of Correction in Boston resisting! Call in this week!


Women at South Bay are being served bug-infested food, are forced to live  in flooded cells, and daily face unsanitary and dangerous conditions.  Women are refusing meals and demanding that the situation immediately be  put to rights.

Grievances have been filed about food infested with maggots*; rat  droppings have also been found in prisoners' food.  The late rain may have been an annoyance to some of us, but it was flooding the women's cells in the tower where they are held.  One woman was given a plastic trash bag to deal with the leaks, which bag was soon filled with water.  Another woman took to using her personal property, blankets, towels, sheets, and clothing to stuff up the leaks, all of which was soaked almost
immediately.  Even the ceiling of the visiting room was severely damaged by recent rain.

The facility is fewer than 20 years old.  In response to the complaints, the institutional grievance coordinator declared the food and flooding situations “resolved,” despite the fact that the leaks have not been fixed and the food sanitation situation is merely being “investigated.”

Hidden in plain sight, this Boston facility is right off Mass Ave by Boston Medical Center.  The repulsive conditions at South Bay are bad enough in their own right, but consider that the captive population is much more likely to have compromised immune systems, whether because of
hepatitis C, diabetes, HIV/AIDS, or an array of other conditions.  For people suffering from chronic medical issues, South Bay's filth is nothing short of a threat on their lives.

Call Sheriff Andrea J.Cabral this week at 617.635.1000, ext. 2100 and tell her that she is responsible for the health and wellbeing of those in her custody.
 An effective public relations machine is not enough.  Demand that meaningful changes are made immediately with input from those women
most suffering from the issues at hand.  The two most important issues to the women inside right now are 1. the food and 2. the leaky cells.  We encourage people to leave call back numbers and demand a response from the administration.  We also encourage you to write and tell how your call went!

A woman wrote, “I just need some help.  No one helps the women here.” Please prove her wrong!

*When one prisoner complained to a guard about the maggots in her food, the guard retorted that it was “protein.”

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