Repost by Don Shula in Prison Reform Movement:
This is a post from Debra Hernandez. What she is saying is so important and true.
SILENCE AND INACTION IN THE FACE OF ALL THIS INJUSTICE IS CONSENT, IS COMPLICITY.
Here she comments on the reasons behind the prison abolition movement.
I love it.
Been involved since 1978. The pendulum definitely swung way way right. I hope to see it in my lifetime.
The problem is that the Legislature and system that created the system will put up a fight due to the profiteers. I believe like in Arizona the same people who started to put this in motion in the late 80s are the exact same who are the ones who profit. Many in AZDOC administration now work in conjuction with the private prisons we have here. It continues to grow.
Actually, Arizona is in a teacher crisis. They are down thousands of teachers. Several thousand class rooms don’t have teachers that are credentialed. They have babysitters. Governor Ducey who gave his address at the beginning of the year started all about education being a priority. It is smoke and mirrors. He have condemned buildings that used to be the classrooms, next to what was supposed to be temporary.
He proposed, get this a .04% raise for teachers. What a joke. Minimum wage gets more than college educated professionals.
Now, if journalists want to uncover what’s underneath the smoke and mirrors, they would find it is criminal how our education system has been raided over the last 20 years. The politicians stole from the kids and made a crime and punishment industry that gets billions. Here in Arizona, the budget for prisons is extremely high. Like I said a couple ofbillion or more.
Now, over the years they have put the costs onto the prisoners families.
They pay $25.00 for an application to visit per adult and children who become teems then have to get a back check even if they have visited for most of their young lives. Azdoc took control through the AZ Legislature, years ago, the inmate account and made it the property of AZDOC. So, once it goes on their books it belongs to Department of Corrections. They receive the interest. They get kick backs from the telephones, the commissary . They have to buy there own clothes which are orange AZDOC uniforms. They don’t actually own them, they rent them. Doc will take them back once you are released if they are so lucky to get out. They pay electric, they pay for Doctors appointment and there are fees that have nothing to do with inmate. Those fees are expenses for other parts of the prison system, like programs for drunk drivers who are serving time. There are no programs, no incentives to learn and better themselves. They say they do but in reality that is another smoke and mirror.
WHAT I AM GETTING AT IS,
WE HAVE AN EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM SET UP HERE IN ARIZONA THAT GUARANTEES THAT MORE PRIVATE PRISONS WILL BE NEEDED.
THE PROBLEM IS THE POOR SCHOOLS ARE ATTROCITIES.
THE PRISONS DON’T HAVE THE STAFFING. THEY ARE SO SHORT ON STAFF THAT WOULD BE CONSIDERED A CRISIS. REMEMBER THE LONGEST PRISON HOSTAGE SITUATION HAPPENED IN LEWIS PRISON, THE EXACT PRISON THAT MY HUSBAND AND SON ARE IN.
THEY DON’T HAVE ENOUGH FOOD TO FEED THEM THE FOOD PACKAGE LIMIT HAS GROWN OVER SEVERAL YEARS. THE AMOUNT THEY CAN BUY IN COMMISSARY ALSO HAS GONE UP.
THE FAMILIES OF THE INMATES ARE SUBSIDIZING THE MEALS, THE CLOTHES, THE DENTIST OR DOCTOR APPOINTMENTS. THEY PAY ELECTRICITY, FEES ARE PASSED ON AS WELL. WE THEN PAY OUR TAXES AND WE PAY FOR THE BILLIONS IN AZ DEPARTMENT OF THE BUDGET.
WHERE IS ALL THE MONEY GOING TO? NOT TO SCHOOLS, OR PRISONERS CARE AND NOT SECURITY OF THE PUBLIC.
I WOULD LIKE AN INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER USE THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT AND FOLLOW THE MONEY TRAIL.