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First Incarcerated Worker Industrial Union Branch Forming

 

The Industrial Workers of the World’s (IWW) Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee (IWOC) is excited to announce our first Incarcerated Workers Industrial Union 613 branch application. The charter is currently being reviewed by the IWW’s General Executive Board.

If approved, this will be the first ever IU613 Branch in IWW history. In fact it will be the very first Incarcerated Workers union branch period. Below is their announcement of the formation and a riveting history of prison organizing over the past few decades.

REVOLUTIONARY GREETINGS & FELLOW WORKERS,

On behalf of “Mandingo Warriors & Associates—IWW/IWOC,” we would like to express our most sincere gratitude and appreciation regarding the valuable time, efforts and sacrifices that you, along with the entire IWW/IWOC revolutionary family of this Struggle, have put into this difficult and complex “dilemma” of pursuing the necessary steps required to “effectively” assist in the organizing of those of us, whom are incarcerated within the numerous “Business Corporations” disguised as “Reformative Institutions” (Aka Prisons), around Unifying Principles and a Universal Philosophy that is inclusive of all of Humanity (this is definitely a Struggle Rooted in Equality for all of Humanity and not just the Few & Wealthy!)

We shall hope and pray that all of our Comrades, in the “Semi-Free Society,” are doing well and are enjoying the best of health possible. Your most recent communication (dated: 10/20/’17) was well received and we look forward to receiving future communications from any and all IWW/IWOC members (with a robust invitation to the African People’s Caucus) in the near future.

Before We/I begin to address your most recent letter, Comrade it is our responsibility to inform and make you guys aware of the latest developments concerning the Movement of our Branch… You guys will have no doubt noticed the change in name/title—“Mandingo Warriors & Associates—IWW/IWOC” (M.W.A.—IWW/IWOC), from the previous name–

A meeting was held, 10/27/’17, in response to your letter and concerning IWW/IWOC’s agenda in general. Amongst the few issues that were discussed and resolved, included the uncertainty of some, as-to whether IWW/IWOC represent the realities of True Revolutionary Movement, or, will the Tribe (another name used to describe the entirety of the M.W organization)—as a Revolutionary organization in-and-of-itself, be bounding itself, by mutual agreement, to Honor, Respect, Uphold and abide by the Constitution, By-Laws, Principles and General Philosophy (whenever related to IWW affairs) of a bunch of “Armchair” Revolutionaries, who pontificate upon revolutionary concepts, but, fall far short of actual Revolutionary Movement (The Tribe has been “burnt” by such “revolutionary organizations” before, in which “they talk a good game,” but, when the “heat” is turned-up they are  nowhere to be found…)

However, after a few of our Elder/Senior Tribal Members expounded upon the true significance of the “Statement On Prison Abolition Adopted by IWW At 2017 Convention, “specifically its wide margin of success (51-in favor) and coupled with the consistent efforts by you guys, our comrades within IWW/IWOC, in organizing campaigns in support of prisoners and assisting with the actual organizing of prisoners themselves, the statement declared by IWW is profound and proclaims Revolutionary Movement far more reaching than we would have expected (at-least, from “Armchair” revolutionaries—SMILE).

Our initial agreement, regarding the partnering with IWW/IWOC, consisted of a project that was narrowly tailored and confined to a specific single prison, in order to evaluate how successful the project would become an IWW branch, with the prospect of seeking membership for the entirety of The Tribe and promote IWW/IWOC’s agenda throughout the state prison system (The Tribe has a Community/Village present at practically every prison in state.

Before the closing of our meeting, it was determined, declared and resolved that IWW/IWOC is “The Real Thing!” We will Move to include The Tribe as a whole to the membership base of IWW/IWOC and promote its/our agenda throughout the state prison system. Therefore, because of this resolution, a motion was presented to change the name of our IWW/IWOC Branch to MWA—IWW/IWOC (although M.Ws account for the majority and significant portion of our IWW/IWOC’s membership base at the IWW-Branch, we’re not all MW. Hence, “Associates”—some are Moors, of the Moorich Science Temple of America, and of course, there will be others who will join with no organizational affiliation.). The Motion passed unanimously… We are aware that the GEB reserve the right to “regulate the name of the body.” However, we request that due consideration is given and at-the-least, the initials “MWA-IWW/IWOC” be accepted as an official name (We must continue to Honor those fallen Comrades who gave their lives in order that the Revolutionary Movement continue with the Tribe moving forward.)

SYNOPSIS OF MANDIGO WARRIOR’S HISTORY IN STATE PRISONS

In the mid-to-late 70’s and before the Ruiz rulings, where the Federal Courts stepped in attempting to reform the state brutal prison systems, state prisons were extremely more violent and oppressive than they are currently today. White Supremacy Organizations (WSO), such as the KKK and the Aryan Brotherhood, controlled the state prison system significantly through tactical use of violence, threats, intimidation and an iron-grip on control of daily necessities and important services offered to prisoners (in relations to “necessities,” such as basics of life: food, water, sleep and medical care.). These WSO established their members on both sides of the prison system (guards & inmates) and people of color were their main target for their violence and oppression, along with many white inmates whom were deemed “N***er Lovers” and “F***s” (homosexuals…please excuse the expression)…in other words, white inmates who had some form of “humanity” about themselves! Therefore, many were also “fair-game” for White Supremacist violence…Rape/Sexual violence, unprovoked murders, influence over the parole decision of an inmate and causing an inmate to suffer disciplinary actions through “bogus” rule infractions and much more were routine tactics, in order to instill fear and maintain control of the state prison system.

The main official system implemented and authorized by the state department of corrections was the “Building Attendant” named “Tern-Keys” by the inmate population and yes, they “inmates” (WSO) “literally” possessed “Keys” to the prison cells and control areas of the prison. The greatest percentage of turn-keys were members of WSO. However, there were some who were people of color, who fell under the protection of these WSO…survival in state prisons was a matter of life and death.

In the year 1983 and out of the necessity of survival, black prisoners in state formed an African cultural organization centered on Pan-Africanism and Black Nationalist Self-Defense Movement, so-named “Mandingo Warriors” (we claim our name and heritage from the ancient and great Mali Empire of West Africa), and through the merger of two Black Nationalist organizations, this was accomplished.

MW was formed for the purpose of protection of its members and as a vanguard of the Revolution and prison reform within the Justice System. Bloody wars were fought opposing the oppression of WSO and many were killed or severely injured on both sides, until a truce was called a few years later and an agreement on both sides ended the “Prison Wars.”

With some breathing room, The Tribe initiated the legal fight for reform inside of state prisons. Because of this decision, minor skirmishes with guards and WSO-inmates resumed (However, nowhere near the level of violence during the “Prison Wars.”). Although, Mandingo Warriors found some success in the Federal Courts—through the Ruiz rulings (MW assisted Ruiz with the class action suit, whenever possible), DOC-WSO devised a plan of execution to label Mandingo Warriors a “gang” instead of a political organization and moved to force all Tribal Members into administrative segregation. Another legal battle began, with MW challenging DOC action.

Although Mandingo Warriors found success in the Federal Courts once again and were released from Administrative Segregation in the early to mid-‘90s, DOC initiated its own version of the FBI “COIN-TEL” Program—designed to disrupt, dismantle and destroy the MW-Tribe. The usual tactics of divide and conquer were used. Infiltration of MW rank-&-file was employed by DOC in which would cause significant chaos between those who wanted to stray from the roots and purpose of the Tribe and embark on a course detrimental to the Tribe and its mission. During this period of internal conflict & chaos, mid-‘90s – early 2000’s, the reputation of the Tribe, as a vanguard of the people and Revolutionary Organization, suffered significantly. However, not so much that it could not be repaired.

Members, who understood what was happening within the Tribe took the initiative and made the necessary sacrifices to bring the Tribe securely back to its primary purpose for existing.

It has taken some long and enduring years to accomplish this and we have only recently (within the past few years) begun to really focus on external movement and taking steps to strengthen our outside base (and yes, it need a lot of work at the moment, but, we continue to Move Forward).

We have present this very brief view of MW history, in order that you guys may have some initial knowledge of who are amongst IWW/IWOC ranks…And, of course, as with any and all organizations, our history has an unfortunate period of confusion and chaos, in-that some “imposters” used the standing of this Tribe for their own personal agenda and like any other organization, those whom are true to their principles, will take the necessary measures to correct any position contrary to the mission, as this be true for us as well.

There may be some who will spout negative sentiments in regards to the Tribe, because of possible bad experiences or witness to such, perpetrated by “someone” claiming to be Mandingo, but in truth the struggle never rested in the center of their heart, then there will be many who will praise the strength, discipline and movement of the Tribe…and for them is much LOVE…

We/I have been tasked with the duty & responsibility of devising, implementing and overseeing a Plan-of-Action that will effectively coordinate the logistics of establishing IWW/IWOC membership, initially for MWs, throughout the state prison system, with the expansion of this general Plan-of-Action, reaching out to encourage the Muslim Community to seek membership as well. Within six months – one year, we are confident that it is possible to enlarge the inside IWW/IWOC membership base by at least a significant percentage. The matter of establishing outside IWW/IWOC membership amongst family & friends of MWA, will not be my charge (although, I may be required to assist). Those kindreds in the “Free World” will tasked to organizing and promoting under IWW/IWOC agenda.

Comrades, please [also] be advised, we have begun the process of initiating an inside & outside new membership drive, and formation of chartered IWW/IWOC Branch(es) at several more inside facilities. We have also begun the process of establishing several IWOC’s locales/groups on the outside, with hopes and encouragement of pursuing the formation of a chartered IWW/IWOC outside Branch(es) in the near future.

The outside IWOC-Locale(s) will be located [in Southern states]. We have notified each individual responsible for ensuring that the new membership drive & formation of inside IWW/IWOC Branches (outside IWOC-Locale(s) are implemented, and that, IWW/IWOC Headquarters will contact each of them with all necessary information, in order to develop a reasonable understanding of IWW/IWOC’s goals and mission, and how to accomplish chartering an IWW Branch. Outside comrades have been provided with the necessary contact info of IWW/IWOC Headquarters and have been encouraged to contact you guys and collaborate on the overall strategy of establishing inside IWW/IWOC chartered Branches.

Signed: Mandingo Warriors & Associates—IWW/IWOC

Notes

IWOC is a prisoner-led section of the Industrial Workers of the World. We struggle to end prison slavery along with allies and supporters on the outside. On September 9, 2016 we were part of a coalition of inside and outside groups that launched the largest prison strike in US history. Resistance to prison slavery continues with work stoppages, hunger strikes and other acts of resistance to business as usual.

But it will take a mass movement, inside and out, to abolish prison slavery. We have hundreds of members in prison across the country, and our membership continues to grow. We invite all those who agree with our statement of purpose to join us and to start a local group in their prison, city, or trailer park. IWW membership is free to those currently incarcerated and is based on income for those on the outside. We ask supporters to sponsor a prisoner’s membership for just $5 a month.

We get asked why we are so passionate about prisoners rights. This is why!

Incarcerated people are legally slaves, as per the 13th Amendment which abolished “slavery and involuntary servitude, except as punishment for a crime.” If you’ve been to prison you’d know we are treated as such.

Billions are made annually off our backs. Outrageously priced or grossly inadequate privatized ‘services’ like health care, food, phone calls, assault our humanity – they feed us like animals, suck our families dry, and when sick leave us to die. The government spends as much as an elite college tuition per person to keep each of us incarcerated, but this money does not develop us as human beings, reduce crime or make our communities safer.

They also profit from our labor. At least half of the nation’s 1.5 million are imprisoned in the United States have jobs yet are paid pennies an hour, or even nothing at all. Many of us perform the essential work needed to run the prisons themselves – mopping cellblock floors, preparing and serving food, filing papers and other prison duties. Others of us work in “correction industries” programs performing work in areas such as clothing and textiles, computer-aided design, electronics, and recycling activities. Some of us even sub-contract with private corporations such as Sprint, Starbucks, Victoria’s Secret, and many more.

The Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee will continue our efforts until the end of prison oppression worldwide. For the one big union, against slavery and suffering!

Milwaukee IWW member’s husband taken by ICE

Stop ICE from taking Juan Torres away from his family!!! (Shuwa Torres, Esther Torres-Trainor, and baby Israel)

Stop ICE from taking Juan Torres away from his family!!!

https://www.youcaring.com/shuwatorresesthertorrestrainorandbabyisrael-1067230

WHEN IMMIGRANT RIGHTS ARE UNDER ATTACK

WHAT DO WE DO?

STAND UP, FIGHT BACK!

White America has a long ugly history of destroying family and culture of black and brown folks who were forced into the country, either in chains, or as refugees. It’s 2018, and still families are being separated based on racist policies which govern who qualifies for US citizenship. The current administration has shown extreme prejudice against black and brown immigrants, and it’s clear that now these sentiments are being carried out by ICE. Today, in West Bend WI, a member of my own family was arrested at his home and detained indefinitely.

For those who don’t know him, let me introduce you to Shuwa (Juan) Torres. Father of two year old Israel, husband of Esther Trainor. In this world, you only come across a father so committed, loving, and responsible as Shuwa very rarely. He works tirelessly to support his family, and treats them with utmost gentleness and care. He’s an excellent cook, too, and has no doubt contributed to his young son’s fascination with the culinary arts – while babysitting, I have often marveled at his attention to and delight with anything we prepare in the kitchen together. Because of his father, Israel also gets the opportunity most of us don’t – to grow up bilingual, and to preserve connection to his native heritage. Israel deserves all the parental love and support he can get – the very best of which comes from having both his mother and father in his life.

Shuwa has made great sacrifices and gone long distances to build the life he has. While America’s legal path to citizenship is notoriously long and challenging, he has been engaged in that process for a long time and has made significant progress. However, as far as ICE is concerned, it’s too little too late. On top of a bond set at $2000, there will now be additional legal fees in order to prevent Shuwa from being deported. Both he and his wife work in the restaurant business, and these costs prove to be prohibitive to them. Already with the loss of Shuwa’s income from the household, Esther will be struggling to make ends meet. Anything you can give to support this family will send a powerful message that we, the people, do NOT support the ICE agenda and that we will stand strong in community even in adversity.

NO HATE! NO FEAR!

IMMIGRANTS ARE WELCOME HERE!

Hartford, CT: Nazis Not Welcome

Hartford–(Thursday January 11th, 2018) It has come to the attention of the Connecticut membership of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), the Legion of Queer Anarchists and the New Haven Anti-Fascists that on the afternoon of Friday December 29th, 15 white supremacists associated with an organization calling itself “CTVanguard” held a white pride demonstration. Beginning at noon at the statue of mass murderer Christopher Columbus at Washington Street and Lafayette Street, CTVanguard waved USA flags, held signs that read “we belong here,” and rallied for white power in Frog Hollow, a well know Latinx neighborhood in Hartford. In addition to glorifying a figure who initiated a wave of genocide and racism that still reverberates across the Americas to this day, they saw fit to denigrate with their presence the memorials to the 1798 Irish Rebellion at Heaven Skate Park, and Ancient Burying Ground which is considered an important African-American landmark. At various times anti-fascists faced physical aggression and hate speech while bearing witness on public property, but held their ground so as not to give fascists the impression they could march through our city with impunity. While no one was hurt, we will be doubling our efforts to monitor and oppose them wherever they go.

In response to this and other provocations, the IWW is organizing a series of public educational talks on fascism and anti-fascism. Longtime social justice organizer Roger Benham volunteered as medical support for counter-protesters in Charlottesville, VA this past August, and returned home to Connecticut with a renewed urgency to raise awareness about the dangers posed to our communities by right-wing terrorism. Following his September lecture hosted by the Think-and-Do Philosophy Club at the Mansfield Public Library, the IWW approached him to organize more such talks. The first will take place at Diaspora Multicultural Society at 90 John Street in New Britain, CT on Friday February 9th at 7:00pm, with a Hartford engagement to be announced shortly. Roger will discuss the history and ideologies of right-wing extremism in the United States from the 1930’s to today, and how we “not only as antifascists but also as working class radicals with a class-based analysis and liberatory vision beyond liberal democracy can effectively respond to them.”

Since June of last year there has been a steady and alarming uptick in white supremacist activity in Connecticut. The Islamophobic “ACT for America” was outnumbered by counter-protesters in Waterbury. Fascists from such hate groups as the Proud Boys, Identity Evropa and the American Guard were promptly chased off the New Haven Green by hundreds of anti-fascists. In October the “White Whalers Book Club” harassed the towns of Southington, Bristol and Newington with Neo-Nazi-affiliated propaganda that drew universal condemnation from the affected communities. And in November, the UConn College Republicans, hijacked by members of the extreme right-wing Turning Point USA, hosted Lucian Wintrich, white supremacist provocateur. Wintrich not only disparaged the humanity of UConn’s diverse community, he also assaulted nonviolent protester Katie Gregory, violently grabbing her, after she sought to end his deluge of racist, misogynistic and Islamophobic abuse. Since this incident, Katie been the victim of a coordinated white supremacist doxxing campaign that has called for her arrest and firing. She has also received death threats.

Upon learning of CTVanguard’s attempt to hijack the Irish freedom struggle for racist ends, this latest insult provoked an impassioned rebuke from the US-based National Irish Freedom Committee: “To all fascists, white supremacists, hate mongers, bigots, and sectarian mongrels; you are cautioned to leave our monuments alone, our songs out of your mouths, and our legacy free from your tarnishing hate speech. We unequivocally condemn your use of Irish republicanism, and your use of its monuments to our patriot dead.” (Full text below).

 

From the National Irish Freedom Committee (http://irishfreedom.net/)

To our friends and comrades worldwide who condemn fascism and sectarianism we extend our greetings and solidarity.

The reasons and lessons learned from Éirí Amach na nÉireannach Aontacht, the 1798 rebellion, led by the United Irishmen are as clear and present today as they were 220 years ago! The revolution was fought for the core values of Irish Republicanism, to unite the people of Ireland, regardless of race, religion, or creed; to unite catholic, protestant, and dissenter; to fight not only for Ireland, but to espouse the cause that small nations might be free.

It has come to the attention of the Irish republican movement in America that an attempt to hijack the good name of republicanism and connect it to white supremacy was attempted in Hartford Connecticut at New Ross park at the 1798 monument; the audacity!

You seonin dogs! How dare you stand on sacred ground in an attempt to connect your hatred with a proud and lasting tradition! We have endured plague and famine, language suppression, draconian laws, political persecution and outright war, our history is written in blood, and our legacy is written in stone! Make no mistake, revisionists of history in any form will not be tolerated. You will be exposed for the bigots and cowards that you are.

Furthermore we point out that all those who interact with fascists in any manner, using the name of Irish Republicanism, are by their actions undermining the cause of a free Ireland. We call on them to immediately cease their use of the historic and noble name of Irish Republicanism as a cloak for their sectarian bigotry.

The Fenians were the inheritors of 1798, as we are the inheritors of 1916, written in the
Fenian Proclamation of 1867 are the following words: “All are born with equal rights, and in associating to protect one another and share public burdens, justice demands that such associations should rest upon a basis which maintains equality instead of destroying it.”

To all fascists, white supremacists, hate mongers, bigots, and sectarian mongrels; you are
cautioned to leave our monuments alone, our songs out of your mouths, and our legacy free from your tarnishing hate speech. We unequivocally condemn your use of Irish republicanism, and your use of its monuments to our patriot dead.

An Phoblacht Abu, Long live the All Ireland Republic.
Cumann na Saoirse, The Irish Republican movement in America
Crioche (ends)

Longtime Wobbly in Need of Solidarity

Donate Here

Mike Pesa is a longtime member of the Industrial Workers of the World, currently belonging to the Baltimore General Membership Branch and previously the New York City GMB. Describing Fellow Worker Mike, FW Daniel Gross of the NYC GMB says, “Mike is one of the greatest Wobblies and human beings out there, an extremely hard worker for the union … a humble, generous spirit and consistent Wobbly for years and years.” Being a committed Wobbly, Fellow Worker Mike should be able to rely on the IWW and our comrades around the world during his time of need.

In February of 2017, FW Mike’s wife, Heidi, a former kindergarten teacher, suffered a brain injury, putting her in a coma for months. Following an undoubtedly difficult 10-month hospital stay, she was finally able to return home, although she still requires extensive care. Due to her injury, Heidi’s mobility and functionality have been limited, necessitating 24-hour supervision, not to mention physical, occupational, and speech therapy, as well medication, medical equipment, and supplies, and transportation to and from appointments. FW Mike estimates, “Even in a best-case scenario, Heidi’s recovery is going to take years, and she will likely need some type of care or assistance for the rest of her life.”

It should come as no surprise to us, as anti-capitalists, that the insurance company supposedly obligated to cover the cost of Heidi’s healthcare is shirking its responsibility. As anti-capitalists, we know that insurance companies will abandon us for a buck, but also that we will always support each other.

In the spirit of solidarity, we ask that you support FW Mike through this tragic ordeal. If you are able to make a financial contribution, please donate to Heidi’s healthcare fund through this GoFundMe page; if you cannot give financially, please help share this appeal as widely as possible.

Solidarity Forever,

NYC GDC

Report Back from Bostom Organizer Traing

Southern Maine IWW members joined their fellow workers from points south in Boston last weekend for an Organizer Training 101 class hosted by the Boston general membership branch.

The class was held over 2 days, Saturday and Sunday. It was the perfect course for anyone who wants to organize in their workplace but doesn’t know where to start, introducing participants to a step-by-step process from gathering contacts, to social and physical mapping, to engaging with other workers in direct action and recruiting them into a union.

Our instructors were experienced organizers from successful IWW campaigns in NYC and in the Twin Cities. They were able to share perspectives drawn from their own experiences, including mistakes made and how they overcame repression and union busting efforts by their employers.

The class has made SMIWW much more capable both of organizing in our own workplaces and assisting organizing efforts in other Maine workplaces. It also gave us the opportunity to network with Wobblies throughout New England and to gain a broader perspective on the union as a whole, beyond our local area. As we build the union and establish a chartered branch in Maine, these skills are sure to come in handy!

FL prisoners announce Operation PUSH starting Jan 15 to cripple prison system with non-cooperation in the spirit of Martin Luther King Jr

Fight Toxic Prisons

The following message is from a group of prisoners who are spread throughout the Florida Department of Corrections (DOC). It was sent anonymously and compiled from a series of correspondences received on November 26 and 27 by both the Gainesville chapter of the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee (IWOC) and the national Campaign to Fight Toxic Prisons.

We have been able to verify the authenticity of this message which was also posted on SPARC (Supporting Prisoners and Real Change), a social media page for Florida prisoners and their families.

According to their statement, these prisoners plan to initiate a work stoppage or “laydown” beginning Monday, January 15th, coinciding with MLK Day, in nonviolent protest of conditions in FL prisons. They are calling it Operation PUSH.

Their primary demands are clear and concise: end prison slavery, stop price gouging, and fully return parole. They believe these issues have directly created the overcrowding that is responsible for the deplorable conditions in Florida prisons.

Their statement also raises other major issues that need to be grappled with, including the death penalty, voting rights and environmental health conditions.

From the communication we have received, these prisoners claim to represent thousands in at least eight facilities already. And say they are prepared to “stay down indefinitely” until someone addresses their concerns.

The following text is their message regarding Operation PUSH in its entirety:

FL Prisoners Call for Operation PUSH to Improve the Lives of Incarcerated People and the Communities We Come From

Sending out an S.O.S. to all parties concerned!

We are currently forming a network agency within D.O.C. We are asking all prisoners within the Department of Corrections to take a stand by laying down starting January 15, 2018, until the injustice we see facing prisoners within the Florida system is resolved.

We are calling on all organized groups as well as religious systems to come together on the same page. We will be taking a stand for:

1. Payment for our labor, rather than the current slave arrangement
2. Ending outrageous canteen prices
3. Reintroducing parole incentives to lifers and those with Buck Rogers dates

Along with these primary demands, we are also expressing our support for the following goals:

• Stop the overcrowding and acts of brutality committed by officers throughout FDOC which have resulted in the highest death rates in prison history.
• Expose the environmental conditions we face, including extreme temperatures, mold, contaminated water, and being placed next to toxic sites such as landfills, military bases and phosphate mines (including a proposed mine which would surround the Reception and Medical Center prison in Lake Butler).
• Honor the moratorium on state executions, as a court-ordered the state to do, without the legal loophole now being used to kill prisoners on death row.
• Restore voting rights as a basic human right to all, not a privilege, regardless of criminal convictions.

Operation PUSH

Every Institution must prepare to lay down for at least one month or longer: No prisoners will go to their job assignments.

Our goal is to make the Governor realize that it will cost the state of Florida millions of dollars daily to contract outside companies to come and cook, clean, and handle the maintenance. This will cause a total BREAK DOWN.

In order to become very effective we must use everything we have to show that we mean business. This is our chance to establish UNITY and SOLIDARITY. This is the strategy of Operation PUSH! A voice locked up is not a voice unheard!

Slave labor

We are encouraging prisoners throughout the DOC to band together in an effort to demand payment for work performances.

One of the main reasons why we’re demanding payment as opposed to gain time is because the DOC is bent on taking something we’ve earned away and using it against us to restructure new release dates.

Another reason is that $50 and a bus ticket to parts unknown is not working for us, especially if we have conditions that require us to pay out of pocket cost.

The system knows that the odds are heavily stacked against us when we reenter into mainstream society, so they make it look like they’re helping us by giving us $50, but the reality is it’s not enough to do anything with!

With even a modest amount of payment we will be able to save up something to survive outside with; for those with lengthy sentences, they would be able to support themselves inside.

At any event, once we win establishment of payment, this would be the one thing the system won’t be able to take away from us.
While this will be the strongest “Push,” our next concern will be on price-gouging us with items we buy out of canteen.

Price Gouging

We can no longer allow the state to take advantage of our families’ hard earned money by over-charging us, they’re taking food out our mouths!

All prisoners and their family members are getting pimped with these outrageous canteen prices. We want regular market value.

Take for example: one case of soup on the street cost $4.00. It costs us $17.00 on the inside. This is highway robbery without a gun. It’s not just us that they’re taking from. It’s our families who struggle to make ends meet and send us money—they are the real victims that the state of Florida is taking advantage of. We got to put a stop to this!

Parole

The federal government has given every state in the country a choice as to how they wish to use incentives to reward their prisoners. Florida decided to offer gain time as an incentive, however, those who have life sentences and Buck Rogers dates don’t have any incentives.

We are now demanding that the State of Florida bring back parole and come up with a payment for prisoners work performances, as the law required.

Let us demonstrate why these two issues are so important. Take for example someone who has done a ten year bid. In the process he loses all family support and money stops, the letters stop. He finds himself supporting himself the best way he can. In short, the system robbed him of ten years of labor.

He has nothing to show for it so now even if he does his ten year bid with no probation or parole, he’s still a convicted felon, and finding a job is very difficult.

These are the things we’re protesting, and we are currently trying to mentally prepare Florida inmates throughout the DOC for January 15.

WE HAVE TO STRIKE BACK AND STAND FOR WHAT IS RIGHT!

What do you do when there’s no body giving you jack shit and you’re hungry? Add to this you wearing hand-me-downs, looking like you can’t be trusted? This is enough to drive you off the edge and try your hand at stealing, robbing, or selling drugs to make a dollar.

This is not a joke! In fact it’s our reality and for those who do have strong family support, we salute you, but please understand you are the few that are blessed with the foot hold that you have. This is not the case for the over-all majority, and this is the cause of high recidivism rates.

It’s time we reverse the psychology and STAND together. The way to strike back is not with violence as this is what they want! If we show them violence they will have a legitimate excuse to use brute force against us and explain to the public that they had to use brute force in order to contain the situation. However, their weakness is their wallet.

By sitting down and doing nothing, each institution will have the responsibility of feeding, cleaning, and all the maintenance. DO THE MATH.

The more institutions that have to employ outside contractors, the sooner we will see results.

Welcome to Operation PUSH.

Please forward this.