Sixteen folks incarcerated at Central Prison in Raleigh, NC are going on a hunger strike starting Monday January 20, 2020 as an act of comradery to the 200 prisoners being tortured in Unit One (a mental health unit). They need your help to make the calls on Monday, January 20th. And if you have the time thereafter, call any other day you can until their demands are met and those sixteen hunger strikers can eat again.
In Unit One at Central Prison, guards are daily using chemical mace against both (level 2) mental health prisoners who receive psychiatric help and (level 3) mental health prisoners who take psychotropic medications. Guards are trigger happy and deploy an excessive amount into the prisoner’s small cell at the slightest disagreement. Pursuant to Chapter F Section 1504 Procedure (d):
“An officer is prohibited from using force solely as a result of verbal provocation. An officer shall not use force against an offender who has abandoned his/her resistance or who is effectively restrained. The use of force as punishment is strictly prohibited.”
Furthermore, these prisoners attend a group therapy session every Monday but while these prisoners are in group, Unit One’s guards destroy the cells of these prisoners by searching their cells and throwing their personal belonging all around the cell. This is done to deter the prisoners from attending group, discouraging them from receiving treatment.
Medical staff continue to show deliberate indifference to the needs of the prisoners housed on Unit One. Several prisoners are not receiving their self-meds (medications given out monthly that prisoners keep in their cells, these meds are but are not limited to blood pressure meds and high cholesterol meds, etc.). To receive these meds, the prisoner submits a medication refill request. The medical staff has neglected to submit the requests therefore leaving several prisoners without their meds.
It takes months to be even seen by medical staff when a sick call is submitted. Prisoners are not receiving adequate healthcare. Prisoners are compelled to endure illnesses for months before being seen by medical staff.
This medical neglect and excessive use of force towards the most vulnerable population in Central Prison is cruel and unusual torture and a human rights violation.
These sixteen brave and selfless activists imprisoned in Central Prison are taking a stand for those in Unit One who are mentally incapable of making these demands, by way of a hunger strike. This is a humanitarian display of unity for those inside who face injustice by the very same who face injustices enslaved right there with them. This solidarity is inspiring. Please help them to expose these human rights violations and meet their basic, humanitarian demands by joining the phone zap and calling in to amplify their voices!
Suggested script and demands:
I am aware that Central Prison’s guards and medical staff are directly torturing the prisoners and there are 16 hunger strikers exposing these human rights violations that will not eat until the following issues are addressed:
1. The excessive use of chemical mace on prisoners who have not been a threat to staff or others.
2. Stop the targeted searches of mental health prisoners who attend weekly group on Unit One. We know that this is an attempt to discourage from attending group to receive treatment.
3. Address the deliberate indifference shown by medical staff not refilling prisoners’ self-meds and neglecting to answer sick calls within a timely manner
Who to call:
- (919) 733-0800 Central Prison, Request to speak with Deputy Warden Steven Waddell, Unit One Manager Tenbrook, and/or medical personnel.
- (919) 838-4000 DPS Office; Request to speak with Commissioner Todd Ishee and/or Dr. Gary Junker
- (919) 838-3861 Gary Junker
- (919) 743-4101 Stephen Waddell
Who to email:
- Todd Ishee: email@example.com
- Gary Junker: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Stephen Waddell: email@example.com
You don’t have to give your name or any other information if you don’t want to. In fact put them on the spot and immediately ask them: "who am I speaking to?" And when they ask you who you are, say: "that doesn’t matter, what matters is…(demands)"
Entering *67 before any number may block your caller ID.
Don’t worry about anyone giving you the runaround, not getting through or having to leave a message. Just pursue it to the point that you can. We are calling to apply pressure and every call counts.
*Please report back on calls made in the comment section below or email firstname.lastname@example.org
**Please share widely on social media and with sympathetic journalists you know
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