Call to defend Ohio hungerstrikers maced for protesting retaliation!

David Easley, James Ward, and Matt Hinkston went on hunger strike on Friday, September 14. They are demanding an end to retaliation for involvement in the national strike, and protesting the long-term solitary confinement of inmates with mental health issues, and violence by guards. Prison officials are trying to put them in solitary and to put David in a sound-isolation chamber (a "bubble") in retaliation for this, and on Friday, September 14, guards in the Toledo Correctional Institution maced them for being on hunger strike and having a sit-in. This situation is still developing. It's really important for prison officials to know that we're watching, and that David, Jay, and Matt have public support for their human rights demands. Prisoners involved in the strikes have been put in solitary for months and years - Matt has been in limited privilege housing for 6 months and they're trying to extend his time in there, and David has been moved between a restricted unit and suicide watch over the last year. 

David writes, "I'm at Toledo, OH Correctional Facility and dealing with retaliation from 3 officers: Poupard, Cunningham, and Zimmerman, and I keep getting threats, and there's another officer Lee but he's not here currently, but they all done made a pact where they put a hit out on me. It's an ongoing situation dealing with the incident in June 18, 2018 where Officer Hughes beat me up, so they lied on their reports and told all the nurses to lie on their reports and say I tried to attack them so the CO won't lose his job for spraying me with mace in June, and I wrote them up and beat the charges, whatever, and now they're upset because I got into it with one of the nurses. They’re writing false reports on me - what if she would have gotten me indicted for shit I didn't do? You’re lying on me saying I did shit I didn’t do; what if the highway state patrol would have come in here, and they believed you and pressed charges on me? Lies. So when she told them anyway that I spit on her they were like ‘When the time is right we’re gonna get you, we’re going to beat the fuck out of you, spray you with mace or whatever” and Cunningham, Zimmerman, and Lee they’ve been trying to spray mace in here through the door all day but I keep blocking the floo hatch, with the mat, so they can’t spray. So the supervisor keeps coming up here bringing, trying to bring my food or whatever, but I’m on a hunger strike, so I’m not accepting no food – me, Matt Hinkston, and James Ward have been on hunger strike since Friday, yesterday, and we’ve got to miss 9 meals before they declare it a hunger strike. The 9th meal will be tomorrow, Sunday at dinner, and then they declare it an official hunger strike. We still on a hunger strike right now but 9 meals, that’s how they do it, then it goes into the computer system, pretty much. So uh. That’s what’s going on now, and we would appreciate it if we get support from IWOC headquarters to send out a phone zap. […] We need everybody to start calling in starting Saturday night, Sunday, Monday all through. Matt Hinkston and Ward, they’re known for going on long hunger strikes, they’ll probably be going for at least the next 2 weeks. Matt, he’ll probably be going for a month. So we’ll be trying to check in with y’all and give y’all updates on the hunger strike, if it ends or when it ends or whatever. We thank everybody for the support too.”

Toledo Correctional Institution phone: 419-726-7977 fax 419-726-7151, email drc.toci@odrc.state.oh.us

Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections: interim director Stuart Hudson phone: 614-387-0588

Ohio Correctional Institution Inspection Commission: 614-466-6649

We are asking people to call and ask why mace has been used against them, to check on them, and to demonstrate support for their demands. 

Example script: "Hello, I'm calling in support of David Easley (A#306400), James Ward (A#517461), and Matt Hinkston (A#724969). I've heard that they are on hunger strike in protest of the excessive use of solitary confinement against individuals with mental health issues, and were sprayed with mace on Friday, September 14th. I support their human rights demands and urge you to meet with them about these issues, and to stop retaliating against them for demonstrating."

Call reports: dm IWOC @IWW_IWOC or report here in comment section

Updates 
Tuesday afternoon: We received word that David Easley has gone off hungerstrike. The rest are still going. Another number to call: 614-752-1150 for the office of communications

Comments

Reva (not verified)
Called and left messages, followed the script. Holding you all in the light.
Felix (not verified)
Called, they sent me in a voicemail loop. Left a message. Zaps are working, they don't want to talk
Barbara Burns (not verified)
Called and left script message at each Toledo Correctional Inst. and ODRC. Submitted complaint form online at Ohio CIIC (www.cicc.state.oh.us) for each D. Easely, J. Ward and M. Hinkston, using script (edited) provided. Also called Office of Communications (614-752-1150) and spoke with a very pleasant young woman, sharing the scripted info. I then asked if my call was recorded or if she writes it down and who gets the message. She said the message is the same from "all" the people calling and that the messages are verbally relayed to the responsible folks. She sounded sympathetic.
Lav (not verified)
As soon as i told wardens Office what I was calling to they transfered me to some lady named something like selmeyer at ohio Dept or rehab and corrections, couldn't leave message cuz mailbox was full
Andy L (not verified)
For Toledo Correctional: They picked up and I was able to talk to someone, but as soon as I began the script, I was forwarded to a full voicemail box and was unable to leave as message. For the Dept. of Rehabilitation and Corrections: I was unable to reach anybody and was not given a voicemail box. For the Inspection Committee: There was no voicemail box set up, but they left information for an online complaint form, which upon inspection, looks like it is used for inmates to submit complaints. As I did not want to interfere with an inmate getting their complaint read in a timely manner, I didn't submit anything.
Lav (not verified)
Tried calling ohio Dept of r and c but this time couldn't get in contact with Stuart. They told me call Jolynn Smith 6147521150 for "media calls" or if you're in contact with the inmates directly call Toledo about talking to their unit manager
Nube (not verified)
Made my call to r and c and was immediately transferred to voicemail which was full. I claws back and left a message at the unit management Dept. Called second number (614) and was able to leave a message with a woman who patiently let me speak and said she'd pass on the message
bearfootfree@gm... (not verified)
I made 3 calls. I got through to two people and left a message. one line didn't answer but I was able to get through on the listed suggested number .
Max (not verified)
Called
Jazi (not verified)
Our phone zap group was unable to get thru at Toledo (transferred to voicemail box that was full). Left messages for the interim director ODRC who was “not in the office today”. Used or modified the sample scripts in the messages we left.
sam
Emailed warden Stuart Hudson at Stuart.Hudson@odrc.state.oh.us and deputy warden at Sean.Bowerman@odrc.state.oh.us, got this response from an assistant warden: Sonrisa.Sehlmeyer@odrc.state.oh.us Thank you for your email to Interim director Hudson and Warden Bowerman. We at Toledo Correctional Institution are aware of the concerns voiced by the offenders that you mention in your email, and take them seriously. Although the reasons for them refusing their meals differs from what they have reported to us, we none the less follow our hunger strike policy in every instance. All inmates in DRC have a grievance procedure available to them if they feel that their complaints are not being addressed. Administrative rule 5120-9-31 specifically states; “This procedure is designed to address inmate complaints related to any aspect of institutional life that directly and personally affects the grievant. This may include complaints regarding policies, procedures, conditions of confinement, or the actions of institutional staff." We encourage all offenders to utilize the grievance procedure when problems arise, and it would be helpful if you also encourage them to utilize it as well. This link will take you to the DRC Hunger strike policy: http://www.drc.ohio.gov/Portals/0/Policies/DRC%20Policies/68-MED-17%20(Oct%202017).pdf?ver=2017-10-25-095515-790 Grievance procedure: http://codes.ohio.gov/oac/5120-9-31v1 Thank you, Sonrisa Sonrisa Sehlmeyer Correction Warden’s Asst 2 Toledo Correctional Institution