PRESS STATEMENT: Sept 9 NATIONWIDE PROTEST, WORKSTRIKE, BOYCOTT, AND DEMONSTRATIONS 

FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT

National Freedom Movement Against Mass Incarceration and Prison Slavery
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact Information:

For Media Requests:

Mothers and F.A.M.ilies, Inc
P.O. BOX 186,
New Market, AL 35761

Exec. Board Members Ms. Antonia Brooks, Ms. Dara Folden, Ms. LaTosha Scott

Phone: 256.203.4371

Freealabamamovement@gmail.com

For Movement updates and all other inquiries:

National Representative

Pas. Kenneth S. Glasgow

The Ordinary People’s Society
334.791.2433

September 9, 1971 ATTICA Rebellion 45th Anniversary

FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT kicks off Sept. 9, 2016 National Non-Violent and Peaceful Prison Shutdown for Civil and Human Rights at Holman prison in Atmore, AL.

After launching its Movement in 2014 with the first coordinated work stoppages and shutdowns in Alabama prison history, FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT, building on its success with subsequent strikes, issued a call in 2015 with its document titled F.A.M.’s 6-Step Plan of Action 2015 (see our WordPress blog) for the first coordinated Nationwide Prison Work Strike in US History. This plan, along with its publication, “Let The Crops Rot In The Field” were then circulated throughout F.A.M.’s nascent network of supporters for its National Freedom Movement Against Mass Incarceration and Prison Slavery.

With assistance from other organizations and people, including Bro. Lorenzo “Kim’Boa” and Sis. JoNina Irvin of the Ida B. Wells Coalition against Police Brutality, Brianna Peril and David Boehnke of IWW/IWOC, Annabelle Parker, Mary Ratcliff of San Francisco Bay View, FREE MISSISSIPPI MOVEMENT and FREE MISSISSIPPI MOVEMENT UNITED, Queen T of SignofTheTimes/ FREE OHIO MOVEMENT, Anthony Robinson/The New Underground Railroad, Mississippi Southern Belles, Anarchist Black Cross and many others, F.A.M. began organizing, leading and directing this National call.

Today, September 9, 2016, at appx 12:01 am, FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT has kicked off the Sept. 9, Nationwide Prison Workstrikes, Boycotts and International Protests from Holman prison in Atmore, Alabama, in solidarity with confirmed strikes underway in Florida, South Carolina, and Texas.

F.A.M. has reiterated its call, first made January 1, 2014 with its first coordinated Workstrikes, for Non-Violence and Peaceful demonstrations both inside and outside of prisons as the solution to the exploitation and other forms of abuse that take place in Americas prisons, including forced prison slavery.

F.A.M. has often stated that the solution to mass incarceration and prison slavery must be lead by the men, women and children who are incarcerated and who are contributing to prison slavery and our own oppression by continuing to produce goods and provide services and purchase products that generate billions of dollars in revenue each year to support prison slavery. The 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution continues to permit slavery to exist in this country “as Punishment of crime, whereof the person has been duly convicted,” and the institution and enterprise of slavery was legally transferred to the State government’s prison systems.

These Non-Violent and Peaceful protests  are designed to expose the nefarious economic motives of individuals, State and Federal government, and corporations like McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Starbucks, John Deer, the ALEC corporation, Victoria Secret, US military, Whole Foods, Wal Mart, Keefe, AT&T and Verizon call centers, and many others behind laws like mandatory minimums, three strikes laws, juvenile prosecution as adults, etc. that are used to incarcerate people under oppressive, inhumane conditions for extended periods of time, solely for the use of free prison labor for profit — yet in the name of crime and punishment.

F.A.M. has issued a “FREEDOM BILL“, which contains the demands that they are imposing upon the Alabama legislature to correct the problem of mass incarceration and prison slavery in Alabama.

FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT
To assist FAM and their National Freedom Movement and to support the people on the inside who are making these sacrifices, please donate to famfamalabama@Gmail.com today.

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Malik Washington speaks: End Prison Slavery in Texas!

From: Keith ‘Malik’ Washington – Spokespersyn for – End Prison Slavery in Texas!

Peace and Blessings sisters and brothers! I hope this communication finds all of you doing well! Within the next few weeks many Free World Folks will be wondering why all these prisoners are refusing to work. I’d like you to read this message on any Radio Station that will allow you – focusing hard on the large metropolis cities of Houston, Dallas, San Antonio, Austin, and El Paso, Texas.If someone could post the message on you tube via social media that will help a lot.

Message: – Radio/Internet etc.

Peace and Blessings to all – my name is: Keith ‘Malik’ Washington. I am one of the key spokespersyns for the End Prison Slavery in Texas Movement. I am from Houston, Texas, specifically the 3rd Ward. There are many Prison Authorities and Law Enforcement Officials who will attempt to characterize our movement as violent.
I have never endorsed or promoted violence in this Movement simply because it plays right into the hands of the individuals and Agencies who oppress us.

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice, F.B.I., D.H.S., and numerous Federal and State Law Enforcement and Intelligence Agencies are fully equipped to deal with violence.

However as prisoners finally become visible in the media we must use this opportunity to convey our thoughts and demands in an intelligent, pragmatic, and respectful manner.

What scares T.D.C.J. about this movement is not the violence – it is the prospect of two things:

1.) The threat of losing money from having to stop or slow operations of the numerous Texas Correctional Industry Factories which generate millions of Dollars.

2.) Being exposed in the main-stream media as an Agency which exploits, oppresses, and abuses human beings in their care.

On top of being a spokespersyn for our movement I am also a proud member of the Industrial Workers of the World and the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee. Before I leave you I want to briefly state our Demands:
1.) On a National Level we want Presidential Candidates Hillary Clinton or Jill Stein to craft Legislation that will Abolish Prison Slavery by Amending the 13th Amendment.
2.) In Texas we want the Following:
A.) Good Time & Work Time credits which actually reduce our prison terms – All of us, not some!
B.) An Oversight Committee for T.D.C.J.
C.) Right to an Attorney on Habeas Filings
D.) Abolish the $100 Medical Co-pay System
E.) Humane Living Conditions & Treatment

There are no Racial issues we have – it is well understood that there are Black, White, Latino – Asian and Arab human beings who SUFFER inside Texas Prisons.
We are pleading with the World to hear our cries for Freedom and Humane Conditions. I leave you all as I came in Peace.
In Solidarity – Malik

Read also Malik’s articles in the SF Bay View:

Hard lessons in the struggle to end prison slavery (Sept 1, 2016)
The movement inside Texas prisons will not be complete until the sisters join (April 1st, 2016)
Prisoners file federal lawsuit to end prison slavery in Texas (March 26, 2016)
End prison slavery in Texas now! (Feb. 11, 2016)

 

F.A.M.’s STEP-3: McDonald’s INITIATIVE: S-To-P The “school-to-prison” pipeline

11287432_10206815466568514_893364780_o“In order to stop the school-to-prison pipeline, we have to bring our Youth into the Movement and attack the economic facilitators who finance the pipeline.”

FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT

<a href=”https://www.facebook.com/innocentmanmelvinray&#8221; target=”_By Melvin Ray
freealabamamovement@gmail.com
Freealabamamovement.com
Tel.: 256 384 4FAM

In the 1600’s and 1700’s when slavery took off in America, the British Crown and other foreignIllustration: We have to break this chain companies financed the slave transport systems that helped to ship millions of men, women and children of African descent around the world for forced slave labor. Also victimized by these slave traders were the Native inhabitants of North and South America.

In 2015, slavery continues on around the World and particularly in America in the front of mass incarceration FOR prison slavery. The companies that now invest in the transport of men, women and children predominately of African descent (and Native inhabitants and Mexicans) are familiar names like McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Dell Computers, CCA, GEO Group, U.S military, Victoria’s Secret, AT&T, WalMart and so many more.

But instead of shipping human cargo from the continent of Africa, the U.S. slave market now ships directly from predominately black inner-cities communities and other poor communities inhabited by Africa/Black/Mexican/Native/Poor people.

Today the lifeline of this mature capitalist market has come to be known as the “school-to-prison” pipeline, where children in poor black communities are under attack for prison by market forces that create poverty, unemployment, political assault from so-called criminal laws, under-investment in schools, AND multi-generational absences of millions of black men, women and children who are incarcerated in US prisons.

In response to this, FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT has developed a 6-Step Plan of ACTION 2015, and Step 3 of this plan involves strategizing around the economics factors of the pipeline and targeting companies one at a time, starting with McDonald’s, who are involved in this modern slave trade.

FOLLOW THE MONEY, AND WATCH THE CLOWN

We're not loving it (FAM, FCM, FMM): Modern Day Slave Labor: McDonaldsJust like all other issues in American society, in other to overstand the Problem and to understand the Solution, all you have to do is follow the money.

As we said, McDonald’s is just ONE of the many thousands of companies that profit off of prison slavery. In our McDonald’s research group, “FAM-FMM UNITED Against McDonald’s”, we show where McDonald’s uses prison slave labor to produce products like their uniforms, spoons, frozen foods, process beef for patties, and also to process bread, milk and chicken products.

McDonald’s and other companies benefit from prison labor because they reduce labor cost by employing people in prison for either free or penny slave wages. No minimum wages, no overtime, no earned vacation or sick time, no 401k contribution or maternity leave. No healthcare insurance, NOTHING!!! And, anyone refusing to work is met with paperwork that can affect release, result in loss of visits with families and children, threats, and even violence by correctional guards.

Ronald McDonald and his friends in corporate America invest in and profit from the S-To-P pipeline as follows:

1) Companies like McDonald’s invest in or build prison factories to produce their goods like uniforms, patties, spoons, frozen food, etc. They build factories in prison to produce these products, but they won’t build these same factories in our communities to provide jobs.

2) Then, these companies build most of their storefronts outside of our communities and deny jobs to people from our communities, including those of us with felony convictions who need a job to stay out of prison. This is how they manufacture unemployment, which inevitably leads to crime.

3) Finally, after denying us a job in society, Ronald McDonald and his corporate friends who also invest in prison slave labor, wait for the men and women to get caught up in mass incarceration and the school-to-prison pipeline. Once they have us in prison, they force us to work for them in their prison factories for free.

A SOLUTION TO ENDING THE SCHOOL-TO-PRISON PIPELINE: Ending Mass Incarceration FOR Prison Slavery

School-to-Prison-Pipeline 'Stopp'We can SOLVE the school-to-prison pipeline by dismantling the economic incentive for the pipeline. None of these problems would exist if they weren’t making money off of them. So in order to uproot the problem, we have to attack it at the economic core. We have to organize at the companies like McDonald’s — one company at a time — who are investing in these practices to expose these slave traders for what they really are and force them to stop investing in prison slavery.

Our strategic and tactical approach to this Step 3 INITIATIVE: S-To-P the school-to-prison pipeline is laid out in our article titled, “LET THE CROPS ROT IN THE FIELD,” for anyone who wants to participate with a clear economic approach in mind to dismantling the pipeline:

“We will start off our McDonald’s protest by locating and reaching out to the people in the prisons where McDonald’s products are produced. At the same time, we will begin letter-writing campaigns to their investors and shareholders, while also leaving leaflets/pamphlets on the cars of their customers at McDonald’s restaurants nationwide, and organize protests at their storefronts, in a mall or headquarters, or wherever we can, and call for boycotts of their stores to force then to stop using products that are manufactured by forced prison slave labor.

But we focus all of our attention on one corporation at a time, instead of using a scattered approach of multiple orgs spread out thinly over several corporate fronts.”

In the end, McDonald’s and their corporate partners have a choice to make:

1) S-To-P investing in the “school-to-prison” pipeline by building factories in prison to fuel mass incarceration The School-to-Prison-Pipeline 'Stopp'FOR prison slavery, and start building those same factories in the neighborhoods where unemployment is high where their prison slaves comes from, or

2) Feel the wrath of the People until we close these storefronts down that are exploiting us by taking the money that we spend with your company to build prison factories, while at the same denying us employment.

THE MEN (AND WOMEN) ON THE INSIDE HAVE TO STAND UP AGAINST THESE PRACTICES AND STAND UP TO PROTECT OUR CHILDREN

On the inside, we have to organize work strikes to stop producing products for these companies like McDonald’s who have economically conspired against us to fuel mass incarceration FOR prison slavery. We have to strike to shutdown these prison factories that were built for us in prison, but not in our communities. Work strikes remove this revenue from the prison budgets and puts additional economic pressure on their budgets to release us.

If McDonald’s and other companies want to hire us for jobs, then hire us in our communities where unemployment is high, not in your prison slave factors, where incarceration is at an all-time high of 2.5 million Americans.

A CALL FOR YOUTH ORGANIZERS, ACTIVISTS AND OTHERS WHO ARE BEING TARGETED TO HELP “S-To-P” THE SCHOOL-TO-PRISON PIPELINE

Behind bars pencilsIn our Step 3 McDonald’s INITIATIVE, we also want to bring our Youth into the Movement, educate them about the economics behind mass incarceration, and give them a Voice and direct action against the corporations that target them or have kidnapped their family member or loved one.

We have an army of Children being targeted in their schools for the school-to-prison pipeline AND we have an army of Children who continue to be impacted by mass incarceration FOR prison slavery with a parent or other family member or loved one in prison.

We must work collectively to unmask this clown and expose him to our children as an investor who is betting on our children having a future serving them on the school-to-prison pipeline.

FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENTAlabama 3

FREE MISSISSIPPI MOVEMENT

MISSISSIPPI SOUTHERN BELLES

MOTHERS AND F.A.M.ilies

FREE CALIFORNIA MOVEMENT

Read our PLAN OF ACTION 2015, as outlined in our article, “LET THE CROPS ROT IN THE FIELD,” and start organizing a Charter today using our 6-Step Plan of ACTION 2015

Step 1. Draft out a FREEDOM BILL for your State, identifying the laws and changes that need to be made to address mass incarceration and prison slavery in your State.

Step 2. Find a prison in your State and make it the Headquarters for your FREE – (YOUR STATE’S NAME) MOVEMENT.

Step 3. Identify a list of McDonald’s storefronts in your city/county/state that you will organize awareness rallies/protests at.

Step 4. Start organizing at the prisons with other family members on visitation days.

Step 5. Announce a National Shutdown Day for ALL incarcerated laborers!!!

Step 6. SHUTDOWN!!!!

 

Photo of Free Alabama Movement 3 and text Never be afraid to raise your voice for honesty and truth and compassion against injustice and lying and greed. If people all over the world would do this, it would change the earth.

Never be afraid to raise your voice for honesty and truth and compassion against injustice and lying and greed. If people all over the world would do this, it would change the earth.

Support the Strike at St. Clair Correctional Facility in Alabama!

This is a press release sent out by the Ida B. Wells Coalition: 

Scroll down plz for Updates!

Support the Strike at St. Clair Correctional Facility in Alabama!

Today, 48 hours before a peaceful work stoppage starts on Sunday, March 1, at St Clair Correctional Facility (SCCF) in Springville, Ala., riot police have been sent to the prison to beat, torture, and intimidate the men incarcerated at SCCF, whose demands include an end to severe overcrowding and filthy living conditions.

[Note added 2/28: the EJI is lawyer in a class action lawsuit against St. Clair CF, plz contact them too or forward yoru emails to contact_us@eji.org or call them also and ask them to take note and communicate with their clients: 334-269-1803. See below for update. Thank you]

Here’s how you can support the strike and help stop the brutality against the prisoners:contact_us@eji.org

  1. Call SCCF’s warden, Carter Davenport, at (205)467-6111. Tell him to stop the retaliation against the prisoners, who have a right to peacefully protest against their inhumane treatment.
  2. Send an email to the Alabama Department of Corrections (ADOC). Go to the ADOC’s website, http://www.doc.state.al.us. Click contact us and then click constituent services. Type your message, addressing it to Warden Carter Davenport. Before sending your message, please sign it. (You don’t have to give your address.)
  3. Spread the word to others. We must flood the prison with phone calls and the ADOC with email.

JoNina Ervin – Memphis Black Autonomy Federation, Email:  organize.the.hood@gmail.com

Anthony Rayson – Ida B. Wells Coalition Against Racism and Police Brutality, Email: – idabwellsinkc@gmailcom

Background:

On January 1st, 2014, the Free Alabama Movement was launched as a cross-racial collective action, with work stoppages at Holman, St. Clair and Elmore Correctional Facilities.

This is an inside-outside solidarity network that is working closely with the Ida B. Wells Coalition.  We are looking to broaden the support for these courageous and conscious prisoners.

Literature created by these prisoners is available through the South Chicago ABC Zine Distro / P.O. Box 721 / Homewood, IL 60430.  Check their website, etc.

Freealabamamovement.com

Free Alabama Movement  /  P.O. Box 186  / New Market, Alabama  35761

Blog:  Freealabamamovement.wordpress.com

Twitter @FREEALAMOVEMENT

Internet Radio:  http://www.blogtalkradio.com/freealabamamovement

YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC88hKOWZ7PKGaTMPpLMTA w

Antonia Brooks:  256.783.1044     Latosha Scott:  334.322.8989


Update 2/28:

Thanks to the efforts from the People who supported F.A.M. this morning and afternoon, the Riot Team has been ordered to leave St. Clair prison. Yet again, Brian Stevenson (EJI) seems to continue to screen his calls from the family members of the men at St. Clair.

Equal Justice Initiative has filed a class action lawsuit, but they have not returned to the prison to take any steps to protect the men from retaliation from the ADOC. In fact, despite several requests to do so, EJI and Brian Stevenson have not sent any notifications to the “class” that they claim to represent informing them of how to report retaliation or new claims.

No monitors or class representatives have been put in place at St. Clair, and many of the men at St. Clair don’t even know that the “class action” lawsuit includes them. If you have a loved one at St. Clair, we are asking that you contact EJI and demand that Brian Stevenson protect the class of plaintiffs that he and his “experts” will be getting PAID to represent.

Website: EJI.org

Contact: http://eji.org/contact

Equal Justice Initiative
122 Commerce St.
Montgomery, Alabama 36104

Phone: 334-269-1803
Fax: 334-269-1806
Email: contact_us@eji.org


 

LET THE CROPS ROT IN THE FIELDS (short version)

LET THE CROPS ROT IN THE FIELDS:
A Call For New Strategy in The National Movement Against Mass Incarceration and Prison Slavery – Short Version
By Bennu Hannibal Ra-Sun, w/contribution from Kinetik Justice Amun

FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT

After a period of over 40 years of an accelerated rate of incarceration, the issue of Mass Incarceration and Prison Slavery have now reached its crescendo.

Spurred on by factors that included racism, capitalism, free labor, and a politically motivated desire to provide jobs to a valued voting block of rural, conservative white citizens by building prisons in rural and agricultural areas that had been decimated by the Industrial Revolution and the outsourcing of jobs to China, India, Indonesia, etc.

Then, once the prisons were built, the government manufactured a “war on drugs” designed to fill those newly built prisons with black, brown and poor whites who had been rendered unemployable by corporate downsizing and outsourcing in the early 70’s, and who were considered a strain on social programs, unwanted competitors for limited jobs, and ideal candidates for corporations that needed a large labor pool for forced slave labor.

Mass incarceration has now culminated in a for-profit Prison Industrialized Complex that now holds over 2.5 million men, women and children hostage for the sole and exclusive purpose of exploitation and free labor.

Today, January 2015, the people in America’s prisons, mostly black, brown (and white), and all poor, now make up a free (or penny wages) labor force for a 500 billion dollar per-year industry that is producing a range of products and providing services so broad and extensive that it touches every area of the U.S. economy.

Virtually EVERY person in prison, our families, friends and supporters, and even every organization that states that they are against mass incarceration prison slavery, are all contributing financially to the very companies that are exploiting the people through mass incarceration and prison slavery.

Have you ate at McDonald’s or Wendy’s lately? Shopped at WalMart or Victoria’s Secret? How about that Dell computer? Have you used a customer service center? Where do you bank at, Wells Fargo? Are you in the military? Have you seen a soldier in that finely stitched uniform with night vision goggles? Do you work for a State University or agency that gets its furniture repaired somewhere?? Or that purchases large amounts of cleaning supplies, or hand-made brooms, mops, etc.? How many of these companies do you do business with?

Well, if you get up out of the bed and do anything more than breathe, chances are you contribute to the bottom line of a company that is engaged in warehousing millions of people for exploitation through mass incarceration and prison slavery.

Just to get a general idea of how pervasive this modern-day forced labor, i.e. slave system is, check out this article titled: Corporations Involved in Profiting off Prison Labour. Prison for Profit Dirty Secrets1 :

“Prison labor— with no union protection, overtime pay, vacation days, pensions, benefits, health and safety protection, or Social Security withholding — also makes complex components for McDonnell Douglas/Boeing’s F-15 fighter aircraft, the General Dynamics/Lockheed Martin F-16, and Bell/Textron’s Cobra helicopter. Prison labor produces night-vision goggles, body armor, camouflage uniforms, radio and communication devices, and lighting systems and components for 30-mm to 300-mm battleship anti-aircraft guns, along with land mine sweepers and electro-optical equipment for the BAE Systems Bradley Fighting Vehicle’s laser rangefinder. Prisoners recycle toxic electronic equipment and overhaul military vehicles.”

For a listing of the many other companies, products and services, read the article: Corporations Involved in Profiting off Prison Labour. Prison for Profit Dirty Secrets2:

Don’t Trust the Mainstream Media

All across America, one can’t turn on the news, read a newspaper, or follow social media without seeing that mass incarceration and prison slavery (‘corrections’ or ‘prisons’ in mainstream terms) have become a national problem. The ‘problem’ though, as being reported in the mainstream media (msm), is not about the human devastation that mass incarceration has wrought, but about the costs associated with maintaining budgets to keep so many people in prison.

The mainstream media, which is controlled by the business elite no less that our current politicians, are reporting on this ‘problem,’ but with no real solutions being offered.

CAUTION: I must add that the reason the msm is reporting on this issue is because the prison profiteers are promoting a ‘reform’ plan to the public that in reality is a new scheme that has been thoroughly exposed by N. Heitzeg and K. Whitlock in their Smoke and Mirrors series,3 to expand the privatized prison industry directly into the communities with community corrections, privatized parole/probation, drug rehabilitation centers, traffic court, and more, with the sole purpose of releasing low levels offenders, who will then be required to pay a ransom to enjoy a semblance of freedom.

Simply stated, every facet of the criminal justice enterprise will be contracted out to private for-profit businesses, and the human traffickers who own these businesses will become the new slave masters. The businessmen and women will make their campaign contributions, the politicians will ensure that the laws are in place, the police with make the arrest, the prosecutors and judges will guarantee the convictions, and the prisoner will be a slave.

The New Strategy: Using Direct Economic Action to Affect Change

When determining the best strategy to challenge Mass Incarceration and Prison Slavery, it is essential that we step back and take a look at the entire system. We must identify the fundamentals of what makes this system work and why this system exists. Once we thoroughly understand the underpinnings of the system of Mass Incarceration we can begin to see why the old strategies and tactics have not and will not bring about any meaningful change. Then we can begin developing a New Strategy that attacks Mass Incarceration at its core.

Just like the Institution of Chattel Slavery, Mass Incarceration is in essence an Economic System which uses human beings as its nuts and bolts. Therefore, our new approach must be Economically based, and must be focused on the factors of production- the people being forced into this slave labor.

Our Three-Part Strategy

1) Organize prison shutdowns at prisons with major economic industries (tag plants, fleet services, food distribution centers, agriculture, etc.)

2) Call for a nationwide leaflet campaign, protests, and boycotts of McDonald’s restaurants, which is one of the major corporation that has a national presence and that benefits from prison slavery, in addition to others like WalMart, Victoria Secret, AT&T, Wells Fargo Banks, Wendy’s, GEO/CCA private prison companies that are listed on the NYSE, and more.

3) Having our families, friends, supporters, activists, and others holding protests at the prisons where the people are mass incarcerated and oppressed.

PART 1 : “SHUTDOWNS/WORK STRIKES”

1) Organize prison shutdowns at prisons with major economic industries (tag plants, fleet services, food distribution centers, agriculture, etc.)

Remember, we are working against a half trillion dollar system that is controlled by businessmen and women who are the modern-day slave profiteers. And just like any business, their focus is on the bottom line. From this viewpoint, we must organize work stoppages at prisons with economic industries that are operated by slave labor. The impact of a work stoppage is immediate and significant, as production is shutdown and profit margins plummet around the country.

Believe me, if you want to have commissioners, politicians and the like hunting you down, organize a strike. You won’t have to call them, because they will call you. Prison industry is more than just license plates. Now it includes military, food, clothes, mining, recycling, call centers, car parts, cleaning supplies, printing, and so much more.

And when we organize, we have to demand that real “reforms” take place that will afford everyone an opportunity to earn our freedom, NOT JUST EARN A CHECK FOR OUR LABOR, and that fundamental changes be made throughout the system.

Experience has shown us at FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT that this approach is more effective than hunger strikes, marching and writing letters combined, as those strategies will only bring publicity, lip service and some changes, while work stoppages shut down the entire economic system and gets directly into their pockets, which brings the movers and shakers to the prison for negotiations.

PART 2: McDonald’s

Ronald McDonald: A Slavery Master in Clown’s Clothing !!!!

When deciding on which company to protest we have to devise a strategy that we can use nationwide: We can’t boycott all companies because there are simply too many corporations involved. What we have to do is focus on just one of them at a time that uses prison slave labor and that is large enough and visible enough to bring a true awareness about prison slavery, and target that one.

Starting off we have identified McDonald’s as a company that presents itself as family-oriented, but which uses prison slavery to produce a number of goods:

“McDonald’s uses inmates to produce frozen foods. Inmates process beef for patties. They may also process bread, milk and chicken products.”4

We will start off our McDonald’s protest by locating and reaching out to the people in the prisons where McDonald’s products are produced. At the same time, we will begin letter-writing campaigns to their investors and shareholders, while also leaving leaflets/pamphlets on the cars of their customers at McDonald’s restaurants nationwide, and organize protests at their storefronts, in a mall or headquarters, or wherever we can, and call for boycotts of their stores to force then to stop using products that are manufactured by forced prison slave labor.

But we focus all of our attention on one corporation at a time, instead of using a scattered approach of multiple orgs spread out thinly over several corporate fronts.
When one falls, we move on to the next prison profiteer, which can be Victoria’s Secret, Wal Mart, GEO, CCA, JPay, Keefe, or something.

Part 3: Consolidating our Resources

HAVING OUR FAMILIES, FRIENDS, ACTIVISTS, AND SUPPORTERS ALL GALVANIZED AT A SELECT PRISON TO ENGAGE IN PROTESTS AND TO SHOW SUPPORT FOR THE PEOPLE ON THE INSIDE WHO ARE BEING OPPRESSED.

This strategic move is just as important as the strikes, because it brings all of the people together who oppose mass incarceration and prison slavery. We can’t have a unified Movement Against Mass Incarceration and Prison Slavery if we are in a long-distance relationship with our supporters, organizers, activists and others who support our cause. We have to get everyone organized at the prisons, so that we can confront the system at the site of its oppression: the prisons.

By having our supporters in one location for each State, we maximize our resources, increase our strength in numbers, and we move with a unified front.
Very little can be done by the State at this point except to meet our demands.

The protests against police brutality are taking place at police stations. The workers at Wal Mart are protesting at WalMart. The Occupy Wall Street Movement protested on Wall Street. Therefore, the Movement and fight against mass incarceration must take place at the prisons !!!

“The Old Way”

Now, let’s take a look at the familiar strategies of Movement Against Mass Incarceration and Prison Slavery, and see why we need a change in strategy:

1) Hunger Strikes
2) Marches and Protests at State Capitols, (as opposed to demonstrations at the prisons where they should be)
3) Letter writing campaigns, petitions and phone calls, etc.

1) HUNGER STRIKES
The demonstrations put on by the Men and Women in California (and Georgia, Washington State, and Texas) showed us all that with leadership and unity, we can defeat mass incarceration with the right strategy. But, we also learned that, while we did see progess in some areas, it has a minimal impact on the system of mass incarceration.

We have to strategize with the understanding that we are dealing with modern day slave profiteers. These businessmen will gladly let us die from starvation so long as their assembly lines keep moving.

“Leasing convicts to private businesses made a tidy fortune for both state and local governments, especially after slaves were emancipated. In 1878, 73% of Alabama’s entire state revenue came from prison labor. Reconstruction-era plantation owners, though, were hardly incentivized to care about their charges: When any of their starving workers died, they simply asked the state for new ones, at no cost to their bottom line.”5

The net effect on the bottom line from a hunger strike is negligible. This is not going to get the response we need, so we have to do more.

2) MARCHES
Sure, the traditional marches bring attention to issues and they bring people together, but they simply don’t bring about much results. If we must march, then let’s March at the prisons where mass incarceration and prison slavery are taking place at.
As I said above, when the people protest against police brutality in Ferguson, Memphis, and California, they are doing it at the police stations.

When “BANTHEBOAT”-activists protested in support of Palestine, they protested at ports. We have to ask ourselves: If we are protesting against mass incarceration and prison slavery, then why aren’t we doing it at the prisons where our economic strength can be felt?

Just like we saw in California with the hunger strikes, the families and supporters showed their support at the prison. The people in the prisons can see that support and receive the boost in morale that will be needed to carry this thing through. The meeting place is at the prisons!!!

3) LETTER WRITING, PETITIONS, ETC.
Letter writing campaigns and making phone calls are still effective, but we have to change who we are targeting and what we are attempting to communicate.

Letters/calls help when written to alternative media sources and other activists, organizations and supporters of our Movement, to let them know that we are striking so that we can inform other prisons in other states, so that they can join in also.

Letters/petitions also help when we target companies that are using prison made good to let them know that we will boycott them if they don’t stop, and it also helps to contact their customers and let them know that they are purchasing slave-made good. But the old habit of writing politicians and commissioners won’t work in today’s world, and just haven’t produced meaningful results.

It’s time to find a new target audience and bring attention to a new strategy and a new message!!

Is The Current Movement Against Mass Incarceration Spread Too Thin?

In F.A.M. we strategize around bringing all of the forces and resources together from each individual state into one collective whole. Groups that are fighting against the death penalty, solitary confinement, children in prison, voting rights, mentally ill people in prison, free labor, disenfranchisement, parole reform, and a few other issues. We will address all of these issues in our “FREEDOM BILL”, so everyone and every organization that is fighting against these issues should all be fighting together.
Note: Each State should draft their own FREEDOM BILL

The best way that we see to do this in Alabama is to identify the most economically important prison(s) in Alabama, and start organizing shutdowns until all of the strategically important prisons are shut down. One main prison will serve as the “headquarters” for our families, organizers and supporters, etc. At that point, the negotiations begin as to how to tear down the system of exploitation and create a new system based on the structure as outlined in the FREEDOM BILL, which promotes Education, Rehabilitation and Re-Entry Preparedness.

Take for example the situation that just occurred in California with the various lawsuits that the State fought for over 20 years (See the Plata decision by the U.S. Supreme Court) and passage of the Prop 47 law that went into effect. Despite the fact of California’s prison system being overcrowded with a 160% occupancy rate, the State’s prison officials and Attorney General’s office still refused to budge on releasing people who were eligible.

“Most of those prisoners now work as groundskeepers, janitors and in prison kitchens, with wages that range from 8 cents to 37 cents per hour. Lawyers for Attorney General Kamala Harris had argued in court that if forced to release these inmates early, prisons would lose an important labor pool.

Prisoners’ lawyers countered that the corrections department could hire public employees to do the work.” (LA Times, 11/14/2014 Federal judges order California to expand prison releases6)

As for the Firefighters, the Attorney General’s Office concluded that these men who risked their lives for the State, who saved the State over $1,000,000,000 billion dollars annually, were simply too valuable a commodity to release, even though these men worked outside of prison every day and were clearly not a threat to society anymore:

“About half of the people fighting wildland fires on the ground for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) are incarcerated: over 4,400 prisoners, housed at 42 inmate fire camps, including three for women.
Together, says Capt. Jorge Santana, the California Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation (CDCR) liaison who supervises the camps, they save the state over $1 billion a year.”7

While it is extremely rare to receive these type of admissions from the State, what we witnessed in the California litigation is the reality of modern slavery: Yes, the people have an education and are already working in society, but, NO!!!, they can’t be release because it would cost too much to replace their free or penny labor!!

This episode highlights why the strategy of work strikes/shutdowns being promoted by FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT, and now joined by FREE MISSISSIPPI MOVEMENT, is the key to bringing the system of mass incarceration and prison slavery to its death: If we are been held solely for our labor and exploitation even after educating and rehabilitating ourselves, then why should we continue to work? If the firefighters in California can’t be freed because they save the State a billion dollars that they don’t otherwise have, then why don’t the firefighters go on a workstrike? The fires will continue to burn until they either come up with 1 billion dollars to train other firefighters, or they can release them and then hire them to do the job that at prevailing wages.

Also please note that the State is saving one billion dollars just on the firefighters alone. How much more pressure would a work strike/shutdown put on the CDCR or any other prison system, when all the kitchen workers go on strike? All the maintenance and electrical workers? All the garbage workers? The yard crew? Gym and library workers? And then the BIG whammy, when ALL of the factory and farm workers in prisons go on strike at one time, and this strike is spread regionally and nationally?

The financial numbers and fallout from such a strike will be felt from Wall Street to Main Street, and every street in between. This is the power of economics at play, and this strategy is the only strategy that will stop mass incarceration in its tracks.

WE MUST LET THE CROPS ROT IN THE FIELD IF WE AREN’T RECEIVING BENEFIT OF THE HARVEST

LET THE CROPS ROT IN THE FIELD is a proven strategy that was passed down to us from our Ancestors from the slave plantations that was used to disrupt the economics of the field. The harvest of the planter season was reaped when the crops were picked from the field and sold on the open market. When the slave master had invested all that he owned into his next crop (prison factories), the slaves would wait until just before the harvest and rebel against the slave system by ‘going on strike’ and causing the crops to rot in the field. This tactic would completely ruin the slave master’s investment.

While these crops were rotting in the field, the slave master would come down from the big house, make nice and beg the slaves to go back to work

But when that didn’t work, the slave master, just like the modern prison commissioners and wardens, would then result to threats and violence. But those determined for their freedom would resist and fight to the end.

In the end, when the crops were left to rot in the field, the slave master would sometimes lose his plantation if he had used it as collateral to secure a loan from the bank to plant. This is what happens to a prison system that is built upon the exploitation and free labor of the people incarcerated: when the laborers stop working, the free labor prison system collapses because there isn’t any revenue coming in to finance the system of 30,000 people in Alabama, 23,000 in Mississippi, 160,000 in California, or 2.5 million nationwide, who still must be fed, still must be provided medical care, still must had lights, water and basic hygiene.

These obligations and costs don’t stop, but the means to pay for them — the revenue that is produced by our labor — stops when we stop.

In 2014, Alabama has a 400 million dollar budget to run its prisons, which is paid by the sale of the products and services that are manufactured by the slave labor from the people incarcerated.

All told, Alabama is making anywhere from 2 to 3 billion dollars each year from our labor, fines, fees, canteen, phone calls, etc. while over $500,000,000,000 dollars is made nationwide off of prison slave labor.

If we are to end Mass Incarceration and Prison Slavery, which only those caught up in the slave system can do, then we must Unify nationwide from inside of these prisons and we must stop our labor and LET THE CROPS ROT IN THE FIELD.

Notes

  1. See online at: http://truthcdm.com/corporations-involved-in-profiting-off-prison-labour-prison-for-profit-dirty-secrets/
  2. Idem: http://truthcdm.com/corporations-involved-in-profiting-off-prison-labour-prison-for-profit-dirty-secrets/
  3. See: truth-out.org/news/item/27125-smoke-and-mirrors-inside-the-new-bipartisan-prison-reform-agenda
  4. See: Atlanta Black Star, Oct. 10th, 2014: 12 Mainstream Corporations Benefiting from the Prison Industrial Complex http://atlantablackstar.com/2014/10/10/12-mainstream-corporations-benefiting-from-the-prison-industrial-complex/
  5. See: Buzzfeed News: The Prisoners Fighting California’s Wildfires, Oct 31st, 2014 http://www.buzzfeed.com/amandachicagolewis/the-prisoners-fighting-californias-wildfires#.ajPXZzq8xr
  6. See: LA Times, Nov. 14, 2014 http://www.latimes.com/local/political/la-me-ff-federal-judges-order-state-to-release-more-prisoners-20141114-story.html
  7. See: Buzzfeed News: The Prisoners Fighting California’s Wildfires, Oct 31st, 2014 http://www.buzzfeed.com/amandachicagolewis/the-prisoners-fighting-californias-wildfires#.ajPXZzq8xr

FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT & FREE MISSISSIPPI MOVEMENT

Committed to Non-Violent and Peaceful Protests for Civil and Human Rights for the Men and Women Incarcerated in Alabama & Mississippi prisons, and any other prison where the People desire to be FREE.

FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT
Contact Free Alabama Movement:

Antonia Brooks 256-783-1044

NewsBlog: Freealabamamovement.wordpress.com

Website: Freealabamamovement.com

Facebook group: Free Alabama Movement

Twitter @FREEALAMOVEMENT

Email: freealabamamovement@gmail.com – Freemississippimovement@gmail.com

Mail: FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT, P.O. Box 186, New Market, AL 35761 – USA

Internet Radio: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/freealabamamovement

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC88hK0WZ7PKGaTMPpLMTA_w

WE GOT POWER!!! AN ECONOMIC SOLUTION TO MASS INCARCERATION.

FREE ALABAMA MOVEMENT
“WE GOT POWER”

We got Power y’all, and its the FREE labor and other money that we are providing to the ADOC.

Right now, the ADOC is getting appx. 2 to 3 billion dollars per year (IF NOT MORE !!) off of us from: work release, court costs and filing fees, production of license plates, cattle ranch, print shops, furniture plant, fleet services, chemical plant, fish pond, sand, recycling, farming, telephone calls, medical co-pays, canteen and much more.

We also work in the Montgomery warehouse, honor camps, kitchens, laundries, runners, libraries, dorm cleaners, and so much more, all for free.

WE PROVIDE THIS LABOR, AND THIS IS OUR POWER !!!

WE GOT POWER, and WE have to use, take it away from the ADOC, and make them change our living conditions, change parole, changes arbitrary sentencing, and allow us to earn our FREEDOM.

“WE GOT POWER”

Buy Black Empowerment Movement sees progress in Kansas City

FOX 4 Kansas City WDAF-TV | News, Weather, Sports

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KANSAS CITY — The African-American community is being urged not to do any shopping Monday unless it’s with a black-owned business. It’s part of “Blackout Monday,” a movement organized by the National Black United Front in response to civil unrest in Ferguson, Mo.

Workers at Leon’s Thriftway tell FOX 4 News they often see customers who make a special trip to buy their groceries at this store, specifically because it’s the only African-American owned grocery around.

More customers are doing their shopping at Leon’s as part of the Buy Black Empowerment Initiative. Organizers say African-Americans have more than $1 trillion in spending power nationwide. They say by sitting on their money today, the African-American community hopes to send a message and honor all murdered black men, women and children.

“The importance is we have spending power, which means we have the power to make change,” said Taty…

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