[act-ma] 5/1 Prison Suicides - State House Hearing

Andrea Hornbein mononoke at 7gp.org
Fri Apr 27 07:23:54 PDT 2007

 Please come out to support real public safety
Guards and staff slipping prisoners razor blades? Taunting them to commit
suicide? Parading “non-cooperative" individuals on suicide watch unclothed
down the cell block? Placing vulnerable individuals in sensory deprivation,
known to exacerbate reactions termed mental illness? Imposing sensory
deprivation for helping a sick cell mate, filing a grievance, or exhibiting
symptoms of "mental illness"? 
All this and more is paid for by you, the taxpayer. 

State House, Room B-1
Hearing on Prison Suicides
Tuesday, May 1st, 2007
1:00 p.m. 
The Joint Committee on Mental Health and Substance Abuse and the Joint
Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security will convene the hearing to
“take a closer look at prison suicides and the prevalence of mental illness
in our prison system.”
The 29 recommendations of the Hayes report on suicide prevention focus on
prohibiting DOC prisoners from committing suicide barely addressing the
conditions which drive them and those in county custody to it. Those few
focused on guards and staff in no way acknowledge the "culture of 
viciousness" inside MA jails and prisons. In some measure sensible, the
recommendations do not address the despair of benign and malicious neglect
and abuse, including rape, and will allow the DOC and guards to control ever
more of the dollars desperately needed for community services. The report
ignores the need for public oversight to stop human rights abuse and hold
the abusers accountable.
Join us so that everyone is represented at this hearing and not just the 
experts" and insiders. Our loved ones have told us what needs to be done. We
will carry their voices to the State House. Let’s show our government that
it must address the root causes of the deaths behind bars, not just the
symptoms of a sick system.
For Justice,
Massachusetts Statewide Harm Reduction Coalition

Support HB1723 for a moratorium on jail and prison construction/expansion
Read the bill, sign the petition: http://www.MassDecarcerate.org/

WE DEMAND:    QUALITY SCHOOLS--not jails.  HOUSING--not jails. JOBS--not jails.  HEALTH CARE--not jails.  MONEY FOR DRUG TREATMENT--not jails.  A LIVING WAGE--not jails.  AFFORDABLE HIGHER EDUCATION--not jails.  AN END TO CORI--not jails!
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