ALTERNATIVE PLAN FOR ALABAMA PRISONS PROPOSAL 

Monday, January 30, 2017
Alabama State Auditor Jim Zeigler (R) will present his alternative to solve Alabama’s prison overcrowding to the Prison Reform Committee Monday.
The committee meeting will be at 10:00 a.m. in room 325 of the State House.State Auditor Jim Zeigler is promoting his “Plan Z” as “a cheaper and faster way to alleviate current inmate overcrowding.” Alabama Governor Robert Bentley (R) for the second straight year is promoting an extreme proposal he is calling the Alabama Prison Transformation Initiative (APTI).

The Bentley Administration wants to borrow an incredible $800 million to build four mega-prisons and close 14 of Alabama’s existing prisons. Auditor Zeigler warned that the Bentley plan, “Would indebt the State for almost a billion dollars and still not solve the overcrowding problem.”Zeigler said that Alabama Department of Corrections commissioner Jeff Dunn said last weekthat the Bentley plans would raise inmate capacity from the current 13, 318 to 16,000. Zeigler said: “That is nowhere near the current population of 23,318 inmates. We incur almost a billion dollars of debt for the next 30 years but do not come close to solving the problem. Big borrowed cost – no solution.”

Zeigler said that his Plan Z would build a new women’s prison, refurbish the old Tutwiler women’s facility to a new men’s prison, reduce overtime paid by the prison by up to $18.9 million, and continue with criminal justice reforms that are already causing inmate reductions.

Zeigler said that his plan would only require a bond issue of $123 million, which Zeigler points out is far less than the APTI bond issue of $800 million. Zeigler said that $7 million of the annual savings by cutting overtime will pay for the bond issue with no burden on the General Fund or taxpayers.

Zeigler said, “Supporters of APTI are attempting to paint a picture that it is the only alternative to overcrowding and a potential federal takeover. APTIis NOT the only alternative. As a matter of fact APTI does not solve the overcrowding problem at all, by their own facts.”

Zeigler said, “Before the Legislative Session is over, Plan Z can be substantially improved by input from all concerned. This is a much better methodology than presenting the Legislature with a package dealand seeking their approval.”

Zeigler wrote that a Jan. 20, 2017 analysis by the Legislative Fiscal Office determined that Plan Z could decrease inmates to 18,727, dropping overcrowding to 132 percent of Federal guidelines. The figure of 135 percent is generally considered acceptable and is an appropriate target.

Gov. Bentley recently told the Alabama Media Group that borrowing the $800 million to build the four new mega prisons was his top legislative priority of the upcoming 2017 Legislative Sessions. Gov. Bentley had proposed the enormously expensive plan in 2016. The controversial plan was passed by the Alabama House of Representativesbut went down in the Alabama Senate.State Auditor Jim Zeigler has been a frequent critic of this and many other Bentley Administration proposals.

Zeigler has been mentioned as a possible 2018 Gubernatorial candidate. Bentley is term limited from serving another term. Many critics of the Bentley plan argue that a lame duck governor facing possible indictments and/or impeachment should not hamstring the next Governor with paying for prison debt run up by the previous administration.

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The Next Step for Free Alabama Movement: Legal Clinic Network

THE NEXT STEP FOR FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT (F.A.M)

“Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”
13th Amendment, US Constitution

There are several fronts that F.A.M. is currently working on to continue the fight against mass incarceration and prison slavery. With the growth and continued exposure of F.A.M. also comes the need to organize more soundly on a structural and foundational level. In this respect, we are working to structure our legal department and Legal Clinic Network:

STAFF ATTORNEY

1) We need to recruit a volunteer to serve in the capacity of a staff attorney and to develop a fundraising plan to provide compensation when available. This office will help to advise F.A.M. on legal issues and represent F.A.M. in legal matters.

LEGAL CLINIC NETWORK

2) We would like to structure a F.A.M. Legal Clinic Network.

We already have a commitment from several law students, one attorney, and we are exploring opportunities with a law professor and another attorney that we are already in contact with. We anticipate the Legal Clinic Network to start out working in the following capacity:

ASSISTANCE WITH CRIMINAL CASES

a) Handling at least one criminal conviction and/or civil suit per year. In addition, we would like to build a network of volunteers composed of law students, paralegals and researchers to assist with legal research, editing and typing, copying, and filing and collecting public records.

FIRST AMENDMENT ISSUES

b) Filing litigation concerning First Amendment rights as they relate to the right of people incarcerated to peacefully assembly in protest of ongoing civil and human rights violations, and to establish and declare free speech zones at Alabama prisons for Freeworld supporters without interference from state officials when conducting demonstrations or protesting on prison grounds.

(i) First Amendment peaceful assembly rights will also address state retaliation for non-violent and peaceful activity inside of prison, and establish precedent that will be backed by TRO’s to prevent arbitrary detention in solitary confinement and retaliation by prison officials for the exercise of constitutionally protected rights. In California, several recent decisions were issued stating that people in prison could not be punished for hunger strikes because this activity was not violent and did not pose a threat to security.

(ii) First Amendment free speech zones will declare the rights of the public to access public prison facilities and to communicate with visitors on visitation days at these prisons and pass out information concerning public safety, mass incarceration, and civil and human rights issues taking place in Alabama prisons.

https://t.co/65lbuXcM2K

WOMEN’S AND CHILDREN’S RIGHTS

3) The Legal Clinic Network will address the violations of women’s rights at Tutwiler as outlined in the U.S. Dept of Justice report in January 2014, and seek compensation and assistance for all children who were born as a result of these sex crimes.

https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/justice-department-releases-findings-showing-alabama-department-corrections-fails-protect

LABOR RIGHTS

4) The Legal Clinic Network would also like to build a network of labor attorneys and experts to address labor issues within the prisons.

Contact:

FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT
P.O. BOX 186
New Market, AL 35761
Freealabamamovement@ Gmail.com

Alabama Department of Corrections to be investigated for civil rights violations, by the Department of Justice


Above you see pictures taken by incarcerated men throughout multiple prisons in Alabama.These pictures depict only a few of the many inhumane conditions including but not limited to improper ventilation, smoke infested state buildings, improper plumbing, accessibility to homemade and real weapons, lack of security and in sanitary kitchens.

 These are only a few pictures that have been accumulated over the years. But most shockingly above you will see an inmate in a lockup cell at at Ventress Correctional Facility, that is hanging from a makeshift rope. Notably there is no correctional officer any where around and inmates were able to photograph this horrific scene.Thus giving credence to the claims of “no security”inside the prisons in Alabama. 

 The other alarming sight is the accessibility to obtain dangerous weapons. In a picture above you see knives that are in the possession of an inmate that bought them to keep them from falling into the wrong hands.

You also see urinals that are overflowing with urin on an everyday basis, as well as unsanitary kitchen’s. These are contributing reasons to a high rate if disease within Alabama’s prison system.

You also can see evidence of improper exhaust systems, as well as the illegal act of smoking by inmates and officers…if you look closely in the picture of the officer sitting on the stairwell you’ll see a cigarette in his hand.

Four years civil complaints have been filed with these affirmative allegations and the Alabama Department of Corrections deny that these things occur. 

Now that the Department of Justice is intervening will they themselves ignore the overwhelming evidence? 

                               Unheard voices.

FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT RESPONDS TO DOJ INVESTIGATION 

​FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT (F.A.M.) RESPONDS  TO NEW D.O.J. INVESTIGATION: CALLS FOR TRANSPARENCY AND ACCOUNTABILITY 
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 7, 2016
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact info:
Mother’s and F.A.M.ilies 

P.O. BOX 186

New Market, Al 35761
freealabamamovement@gmail.com

  FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT (F.A.M.) is pleased with the news that the U.S. Department of Justice (D.O.J.) will be conducting a statewide investigation into the issues of abuse, violence and safe, secure and sanitary conditions in Alabama’s men’s prisons, even though we believe that the women’s prison should also be revisited. We would like to emphasize that we are looking for an open, transparent and inclusive investigation that will keep the public updated, informed and INVOLVED throughout this process. Alabama prisons are unique in that they are the most overcrowded, underfunded, and understaffed prisons in America. Therefore, any solutions to the existing problems will need to be unique and require “outside-of-the-box” thinking as well.

We would also like to see accountability result from this investigation. In 2014, the U.S. D.O.J. released a report on its year long investigation at Tutwiler. In this report, D.O.J. investigators found that the civil rights of these women had been violated for over a 20-year period, and that at least one-third of all of the correctional staff at Tutwiler had engaged in some form of sexual misconduct with the women incarcerated there. Yet, despite these conclusive findings, which included child births and unauthorized abortions by complicit medical staff, not a single person was prosecuted for the violation of a single federal crime. 
Some of the questions we have to ask are, what is the purpose of this investigation? Are there federal criminal or civil statutes available where A.D.O.C. officials can be prosecuted and required to pay damages as a result of this investigation if they are found guilty of wrongdoing? Will the D.O.J. prosecute any findings of corruption? Will federal charges be brought against officers who are found to be using excessive force? In instances of death, will negligent D.O.C. officials be prosecuted?
 Other questions that have to be asked are, in the ultimate finding of unsanitary and unsafe conditions, what are the proposed solutions? Will the D.O.J. seek to alleviate overcrowding through release programs or more prisons? Will the people incarcerated have a voice and seat at the table towards fashioning solutions (as was done in California in the Askher settlement)? Will family members be allowed to be part of the investigation? Will there be briefing sessions for the public? Will there be on-site inspections where family members, interested organizations and the media will be allowed to attend? Will the investigation into sanitation include water testing, since officers at most prisons are warned to not drink it under any circumstance? 

When speaking of transparency, will the D.O.J. move for policy changes that will afford the media open access to Alabama prisons? Finally, will public organizations be factored into the role of oversight and implementation of solutions, such as educational and rehab programs?  
We cannot just go into an investigation without some clear understanding of what a solution will look like. We have learned from Tutwiler and all of the frivolous lawsuits filed by Southern Poverty Law Center and Southern Center For Human Rights, that oversight is just as important as the settlement itself, and oversight can not be left to the A.D.O.C. under any circumstance.

  Governor Bentley has stated that he welcomes the investigation and looks forward to working with the D.O.J. Well, why should the federal government have to come in and investigate matters that fall within his responsibility? If Governor Bentley does not have a Commissioner’s Office that is capable of assessing the rising violence, murders, drugs overdoses, etc. and understands that those issues need investigating and solving, then what is the purpose of having investigators on taxpayer payrolls?  
Governor Bentley is looking for a political bailout; he ignored dead bodies and waited for federal intervention so that he can maintain his “tough on crime” stance, while “blaming” the federal government for the needed and costly changes to Alabama’s prison system. But now that the ‘feds’ are here, F.A.M. and the family members of those incarcerated have an opportunity to seek real changes if, indeed, that is what the D.O.J. is here for. 

FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT
Freealabamamovement@ Gmail.com

Is The corruption in the Alabama Department of Corrections on the verge of being exposed?

(Governor Robert Bentley)

 This morning after breaking news from the Department of Justice in Washington that there will be an investigation in relations to the civil rights violations of thousands of incarcerated men and women, Robert Bentley, commissioner Jeffery Dunn, Grantt Gulliver, and so many more involved sweat bullets.

 During yesterday’s breaking news inmates across the state in facility dorms, and t.v.day rooms you could hear a pen drop. At the conclusion of the news you heard sighs of relief, sniffles and a few sobs, but big smiles grew as a sign of victory in a battle fought. 

 Convicts and officers across the state are now starting to see hope and anticipating the soon to come investigation and expecting results and positive change for the first time in the history of Alabama.

Today two of the most listened to voices sit in solitary confinement for starting this movement in Alabama.A movement that has grown and spread throughout this nation. These men were placed in solitary for exercising there 1st amendment rights of freedom of speech, and now are huge threats to the Alabama Department of Corrections in exposing the injustices. 

  The convicts and many correctional officers of Alabama are now calling upon the leaders of Alabama to release these political prisoners from solitary confinement at Holman prison and Donaldson prison.(Melvin Ray, and Robert Earl Council).

 This morning the prison activist groups Free Alabama Movement and UNHEARD VOICES chant we won’t be silenced, we will be heard!

 

A Little HOLMAN C. F. History 

The William C. Holman Correctional Facility was constructed in 1968 and 1969. The facility was officially open in December, 1969, at a cost of five million dollars. 
The first prisoner was received on December 15, 1969. The Holman Correctional Facility houses Death Row inmates and is the only facility in the state that carries out executions. 
The present population of Holman C. F. consists of minimum through closed custody inmates, including life without parole and Death Row inmates. 
The living quarters have a total capacity of 998 available beds. There are 630 population beds with Housing Units A-D having a capacity of 114 each and Housing Unit E with a capacity of 174

There are 7 infirmary beds. There are 200 segregation unit beds and Death Row has a capacity of 194 for a total of 1031 beds.

Holman is located ten miles north of Atmore, Alabama, just east of Highway 21 on Ross Road. The perimeter of the security compound is surrounded by two fences. The inner fence is taut wire fence with the outer fence being chain link. The compound has six towers and two perimeter vehicles, which operate twenty four hours a day. 

(WHATTTTTT?)

During the hours of darkness, the perimeter is fully lighted. Thecountryside in the vicinity of Holman prison is farm and timberland. The main crops are cotton and peanuts. 
Located directly behind the facility within the security compound is an industrial area consisting of a Tag Plant where all of the State’s motor vehicle tags are manufactured and a Sewing Factory which makes sheets and pillow cases that are distributed to other state prisons. 

In 1991 a new Administrative building was built onto the front of the main prison within the security compound to provide needed Administrative Offices. 
In the latterpart of 1995, the entire kitchen and dining area was remodeled and updated. In 2000 a newly constructed, 200 bed single cell segregation unit was put online. *In 2007 the housing units in general population were remodeled with single beds and an updated bath room area.

—–

*The 2007 renovation was the result of a 4 day Work and Hunger Strike,  which included all men in HOLMAN prison. (Kinetik Justice was the Spokesperson for the Prisoners during the negotiations and was ultimately “declared a threat to security “and  when,  then Warden Grant Culliver  attempted to place Kinetik in Solitary Confinement Indefinitely,  Attorney Tiffany Johnson Cole intervened and Kinetik was transferred to St.  Clair C. F. )

ADOC has effectively ran their workforce off – September 30th, 2016

Only 7 cars in the HOLMAN parking lot, only 3 officers for Death Row and Segregation, Officer just confirmed that it’s over, as all CO’s are quitting this coming week ~”We’re tired of them playing games with y’all and our lives. It doesn’t make any sense. You be safe Lil Brother.”

Well they told me they had something planned,  now I see what it is.

The Administration has effectively ran their workforce off. Smh