Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Planning for April 19 in Chicago: STOP! Mass Incarceration

Meeting to update on developments and make further plans for the upcoming Stop Mass Incarceration national day of action in Chicago: Monday, April 16, 7:00 p.m. Revolution Books (1103 N. Ashland)
Contact: stolenliveschi [at]

Many youth are in motion around Trayvon Martin and the issue of Mass incarceration very much intersects with incidents like that. If people know schools or have gone out to schools, know students, teachers or principals at schools they could reach out to please take initiative around that and post the responses you are getting.

So far there is one high school where the teachers are making a proposal to do a poetry slam around amass incarceration theme. This is an alternative high school, with three sister schools they want to bring in to this. These school have been active in the past around the Oct 22nd National Day of Protest to Stop Police Brutality.

At another high school, the principal said he would talk with the social studies teachers about doing something around the 19th. He feels this is a very important question among his students. Many of them feel they will be in jail or dead by the time they are 18.

Nancy Michaels, Associate Director of the Mansfield Institute for Social Justice and Transformation (for identification purposes only) signed the national statement.

We want to utilize the Carl Dix speech at Riverside Church, “Mass Incarceration + Silence = Genocide.” There are several opportunities for showings of this talk around Chicago that we are pursuing.

We also want to reach ministers and have some ministers put out a call to other churches to take this up -- to have Speak outs/teach ins, etc. Two churches in particular that would be important to encourage to get behind this initiative would be Trinity and St. Sabina. And it would make a difference for Jerimaiah Wright and Father Phleger to sign the statement in their own right. We are setting an appointment with people from the Archdiocese of Chicago Office of Anti-Racism next week. Ministers we met at recent marches for Justice for Rekia Boyd and Ricky Bradley on the West Side have expressed interest in taking this up and want to talk more about it.

We are also reaching out to the many groups that came together around “Occupy for Prisoners.”

It was suggested that we get to the Campaign to Stop Evictions. There have been initial conversations with some people in that group.

Please let us know (stolenliveschi [at] what events you might go to and work with us to do outreach:
  • April 7 is Occupy Chicago’s big spring “return to the streets” event. Various events and times
  • A major conference on Deportations and Incarceration Thursday, April 5, 10 to 2am UIC Student Center East
  • Occupy the SouthSide's campaign to “Stop the Genocide” event on Saturday (Apr 7, 8:30 am at the Hub of Production, 5638 S. Woodlawn ).
  • Wed. Apr 4 Noon, JR Thompson Center Tamms “I am a Mom” event at the Thompson Center
  • Apr 7, 1pm event at the Metropolitan Correction Center by Occupy El Bario.

A national flyer is coming out shortly. We will add local information and may not run all the signatories.

Currently the Stolen Lives Chicago blog is the central place we are posting information about this event.

An application for the use of Federal Plaza for the April 19 rally is in process (submitted Wednesday, March 27).

Photo courtesy FJJ.

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