Liberate our tortured elders

 

With Liberate the Caged Voices, we seek to transform the cold steel chains of prison slavery into the warm and tender power of human hands to hold on to each other as we make our way to freedom.

by Nube Brown

Liberate the Caged Voices, a program of California Prison Focus, provides a platform to hear directly from our caged community members, their families and loved ones to foster engagement with the local community, while exposing the truth of the toxic conditions experienced by California’s incarcerated people and the impact on their families. Adding art and culture, the idea is to build awareness, solidarity and human relationship amongst community members on both sides of the wall and take collective action. 

As COVID-19 uncovers the system failures across all sectors of human life, the call for decarceration and the release of incarcerated people most vulnerable to the virus reveals the ongoing human rights crisis taking place within our prisons and the need to abolish them. We hear that call! 

California is home to hundreds of elder prisoners subjected to decades of state sanctioned cruel and unusual punishment by indeterminant sentencing, torture of solitary confinement and California Department of Corrections and rehabilitation’s (CDCr’s) dehumanizing tactics, used to also punish the family and loved ones suffering alongside them. And now, to add insult to injury,​ these elders are being subjected to a potential death sentence by the coronavirus and CDCr’s and the governor’s reluctance to release them, despite their vulnerable status. Out of love and respect we will focus on these tortured elders. 

They will not be forgotten or silenced

We invite you to join us! Following the spirit of the Prisoner Human Rights Movement BLUEPRINT, we will enter into dialogue, mutual empowerment and reciprocal education to learn the truth of who these elders are, why they’re aging in prison and what we can do together to demand and facilitate their freedom – and freedom for all. 

#FreeThemAll #LiberateOurTorturedElders #MassDecarcerationNow 

To learn more

Visit www.prisons.org

Join us for our Facebook Live series starting Friday, May 8, 2020, 10 a.m., then every Friday forward. Ongoing Roundtable Dialogues (webinars) start in mid-May. 

Read this 2014 letter from Sitawa Nantambu Jamaa, one of the “four main reps,” the hunger strike leaders, and Mutope Duguma, journalist and organizer for the hunger strikes: “How torture is inflicted on prisoners in solitary confinement.”

Contact Nube Brown, facilitator of Liberate the Caged Voices, at nube@prisons.org.