Secondary prisonization is what happens when people visit someone in prison. Children are no exception. We experience subtle versions of our parent’s physical confinement, elaborate surveillance and strict guidelines for any and everything. In my experience, from the long rides all the way to small prisons in the middle of nowhere, Kentucky, to my little sister’s severe nosebleeds in the car as we traveled through the mountains of West Virginia, to the amped up security at each facility, to the absurdly cold visitation rooms – all of it was miserable.
On May 22, brave prisoners at Virginia’s Red Onion State Prison began a hunger strike. A recently released prisoner discusses torture at Red Onion: “having your fingers broken, being bitten by dogs, being strapped to beds for days, being forced to defecate on yourself – I mean all of this has led to these men demanding to be treated as human beings.”
I hope you’ll consider giving your support to the massive prison strike going on in Georgia right now. Inmates at several institutions in the state have coordinated the largest prison strike in U.S. history as a collective fight for their rights to educational opportunity, decent health care, access to their families, and an escape from cruel and unusual punishment.