Prison Reform

Campaign for Prison Medical Care and Decent Conditions

Posted by on Oct 5, 2013 in Prison Reform | 0 comments

For decades the Alliance has responded to the crisis in prison conditions on three fronts: We intervene directly in emergency medical cases and press for immediate action on the part of Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) medical staff and medical contractors. We intervene directly in cases of brutality and crimes committed by staff against prisoners and press for immediate restorative action on the part of IDOC staff. We have testified on several occasions before State Legislative Committee hearings concerning these problems.  For copies of some of the testimony given by the Alliance click HERE. The Alliance receives dozens of letters every week from men and women incarcerated in IDOC prisons and country jails across Illinois.  Although we have no paid staff, we answer every letter through the work of selfless volunteers.  Wherever possible we make calls to prison authorities, and we coach family members of prisoners to make such calls, with the aim of demanding that medical misfeasance and malfeasance and staff violations of prisoners’ rights are corrected. Proposal for an independent Medical Ombudsman over the IDOC medical system This experience has enabled us to work with experts in correctional health care and broad community forces to put forward a proposal for a Medical Ombudsman over the IDOC medical system which would separate medical grievances of prisoners from the mass of everyday grievances filed and fast track them in a system that would be independent of IDOC medical staff and could order that care previously denied or delayed be provided when independent professional medical ombudsmen deem it necessary.  For a copy of the Alliance Draft Proposal for a Medical Ombudsman click HERE. Only a mass movement can bring the change that is needed We have no illusion that we can bring justice to a fundamentally unjust system simply by calling attention to its serious violations of human rights.  Our goal has always been to organize prisoners and their families and friends into a broad democratic movement involving the whole community, informed by the recognition that an injustice to one threatens all with injustice.  It is only through a mass movement engaged in mass political struggle that change will be...

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Angela Davis on the Prison-Industrial Complex

Posted by on Sep 14, 2013 in Articles, Prison Reform | 0 comments

Hear Angela Davis on Slavery and the Prison-Industrial Complex at Florida International University, September 2003.

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Locking Our Children Away: Sermon for Erev Yom Kippur 5772

Posted by on Sep 14, 2013 in Articles, Prison Reform | 0 comments

Cedric Cal was born to a single mother, in a family that lived below the poverty line on Chicago’s West Side. His father had left the family, married another woman and had very little to do with him. His mother Olivia worked constantly, doing her best to keep her family together. As the oldest of four, Cedric became the de facto father of the family and was entrusted with protecting his younger brother, who was legally blind. Cedric’s family moved around a lot and he learned very early on how to make friends quickly. He liked sports, particularly baseball – and when his family lived on the West Side, he played sports in the local Park District. When they moved to the South Side, however, there were no Park District services available, so sports were not an option for him. Still, no matter where they moved, Olivia became very adept at finding ways of getting Cedric and and brothers into decent public schools. From 5th to 8th grade, he attended Alcott Elementary. Minding his younger brother, he took the public bus every day on a long trek from the West Side to Lincoln Park. Read all of Rabbi Brant’s sermon on Rabbi Brant Rosen’s web...

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October 15th, 2007 – Human Rights and Public Health – Health Care in Illinois Prisons

Posted by on Sep 4, 2013 in Articles, Prison Reform | 0 comments

Read a preliminary report on a study spanning years of direct communications with prisoners in the Illinois Department of Corrections regarding medical care. It examines a self-selected sample of the prisoners. Patterns regarding health care within the system are being documented. Some solutions can be projected.

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