RFJ Mutual Aid Project Update
Scores of people have generously donated to our ReFraming Justice Mutual Aid effort since it launched just 10 days ago! As of today, we have delivered 46 boxes of gloves, 360-plus bars of soap, 1,500-plus tampons, 1,100-plus pads, 1,800-plus masks and more than 1,900 rolls of toilet paper to men and women incarcerated at Arizona state prison complexes to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
On Wednesday and Thursday, the Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation & Reentry (ADCRR) accepted all of these donations, and they assure us that they will keep us informed of their efforts to distribute these supplies directly to people who are incarcerated.
Why is AFSC-AZ leading this effort to care for our neighbors inside?
In the words of Grace Gámez, Ph.D., coordinator of AFSC-AZ’s ReFraming Justice Project: “One of the core values of our work as an organization is that safety, health and wellness begins and ends with community. We belong to each other, we are responsible for one another, and we don’t throw people away. And that is because there is Light in all of us.”
You can continue to support the RFJ Mutual Aid effort by visiting our Amazon Wish List and contributing through May 13th.
FWD’s CASE FOR DECARCERATION
Our friends at FWD.us released a report this week projecting an astounding number of infections inside Arizona’s prisons unless Governor Doug Ducey acts now to significantly reduce the ADCRR population. According to the FWD.us projection, approximately 41,000 incarcerated people and 3,100 ADCRR employees will contract the virus within three weeks, unless Gov. Ducey releases at least 10,000 people from state prisons in the next week.
FWD’s report also notes that the high rates of infection and death among people of color are likely to get even higher as the coronavirus spreads through the nation’s jails and prisons. Black people are imprisoned at six times the rate of white people in the US, while Latinos are imprisoned at three times the rate. And now Black and Latino people are getting sick and dying from COVID-19 at alarming, and heavily disproportionate, rates.
You can read more about the racial disparities in incarceration and coronavirus by clicking here.
AFSC-AZ will continue to focus on how to best help those impacted in our state prisons. You can contribute to the RFJ Mutual Aid project, amplify our work via social media, or TAKE ACTION with organizations from here in Tucson, around the state, and across the country.
Right now, you can help FAMM tell Gov. Ducey to grant clemency to the most vulnerable people in prison!
Tell Maricopa County Attorney Allister Adel to get people out of dangerous jail conditions now, by sending her a message via the ACLU of Arizona!
And you can join The S.T.A.R.T. Project for a “drive around protest” on Thursday, April 23, from 1p-1:30p outside the Pima County Adult Detention Center in Tucson!
In The News…
Correctional Model Predicts 99% COVID-19 Infection Rate In Arizona Prisons
April 23rd, 2020 by Jimmy Jenkins, via KJZZ-Phoenix NPR
Lack of COVID-19 testing, information raises questions in Arizona prisons
April 22nd, 2020 by Dave Biscobing, via ABC 15 Phoenix
As COVID-19 spreads in the state, it also spreads inside prison walls
April 21st, 2020 by Jerod MacDonald-Evoy via AZ Mirror
Sister Helen Prejean Calls On Gov. Ducey To Show Compassion, Release Arizona Inmates
April 21st, 2020 by Jimmy Jenkins, via KJZZ-Phoenix NPR
Prisons Launch ‘Absurd’ Attempt to Detect Coronavirus in Inmate Phone Calls
April 21st, 2020 by Akela Lacy, Alice Speri, Jordan Smith, Sam Biddle, via The Intercept
Coronavirus Spreads In Arizona Prisons
April 20th, 2020 by Jimmy Jenkins, via KJZZ-Phoenix NPR
Arizona should release inmates to control COVID-19 in prisons. It’s a matter of public safety
April 19th, 2020 by Ret. Judge Charles Pyle, via Arizona Republic
Categories: Weekly Update