Prisoners Report on Conditions in

Santa Rosa Correctional Institution - Florida

Postage is one of our biggest expenses. Why not send a book of stamps or two to POB 40799 SF, CA 94140 next time you're at the post office? help out

www.prisoncensorship.info is a media institution run by the Maoist Internationalist Ministry of Prisons. Here we collect and publicize reports of conditions behind the bars in U.$. prisons. Information about these incidents rarely makes it out of the prison, and when it does it is extremely rare that the reports are taken seriously and published. This historical record is important for documenting patterns of abuse, and also for informing people on the streets about what goes on behind the bars.

We hope this information will inspire people to take action and join the fight against the criminal injustice system. While we may not be able to immediately impact this particular instance of abuse, we can work to fundamentally change the system that permits and perpetuates it. The criminal injustice system is intimately tied up with imperialism, and serves as a tool of social control on the homeland, particularly targeting oppressed nations.

[Abuse] [Santa Rosa Correctional Institution] [Florida]
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Beaten and violated in Florida, fighting back

I am at Santa Rosa, C.I. Today, I write you about a potential civil lawsuit on the basis of an eighth amendment violation of my constitutional rights. In short, I was brutally beaten, sprayed in my face with chemical agents, and sexually abused at Union C.I. on March 26th, 2018 by eight prison guards while I remained in handcuffs and leg irons.

The eight (8) prison guards at Union C.I. retaliated on my for filing grievances and discriminating against me. They beat me, gassed me in my nose, face, mouth, eyes, etc., and forced the handcuff leg iron shackle up my RECTUM into my buttock. I was screaming "PREA" while the cell extraction team held me down. In the shower, they covered my mouth, beating me with their fists and the handcuffs. Cruel punishment!

At this time, they lift me to my feet, bleeding from my rectum, and bleeding from my head, face, mouth, etc., pain in my neck, back, eyes burning, etc. They placed me in a cold cell, butt naked, a/c blowing, no mattress, no clothes, no toothbrush, no toothpaste, no toilet paper, no clothes, no drinking cups, no nothing. Nothing to keep warm and bean bags blocking my cell door to prevent me from receiving any of the above items. At present, great efforts are undertaken by medical personnel to cover up my abuse by falsifying medical records stating "no injuries identified". Trying to cover up for security, I then remained in my cell untreated, which is cruel and unusual punishment.

I am in chronic pain throughout the day and night. It is extremely difficult for me to get any sleep at night due to the excruciating pains in my rectum, my neck, back and body. I hear voices waking up in cold sweat like I'm being gassed and attacked all over again.

May it be noted that handcuffs and leg irons were on me during the entire merciless beating and sexual abuse.

I have begun the institutional grievance process by laying forth the foundation and facts of my case regarding this potential suit. At this point, I have done a lot of research on my own and try to contact people more familiar with the law and trying to get help to no avail. I am still being retaliated against and threatened that if I don't stop writing grievances and filing on this, I'm going to get fucked up. These ofc. are playing games with my mail, food, and threatening to strip me and gas me or set me up or have other ways to harm me.

I still can't find any help I need. I am not going to stop filing grievances. They violated my right and my body. I need legal help. This is not getting covered up.

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[Abuse] [Santa Rosa Correctional Institution] [Florida]
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Denied food for being Muslim

I am writing you this letter to inform you of some important issues that I am dealing with at this institution. I filed a grievance on 5/24/18 because my breakfast meal for Muslims observing the fast for the month of Ramadan was late. So I requested to speak to the Sgt on duty. That's when Officer White and Officer Harvey both came to my cell door in G-Dorm. And once again I requested to speak to the Sgt because my food was late. Both officres made a statement that they didn't care if I didn't eat, because they didn't like Muslims because of 9/11. And that they were going to make sure that I pay the price for the lives lost at 9/11. As long as I am at Santa Rosa.

On 5/25/18 I filed another grievance because the next day after the prior incident my bag was not served to me so that I can have a meal to eat after breaking my fast. So, once the Lt. Was called to my cell he told me that the kitchen was closed. And, being that it was late, he didn’t have a key to the ktichen. So he could not get me something to eat. So, the results of this incident led to me not eating, after fasting the whole day. They violate my rights as a prisoner. The institution is responsible for feeding me my due meals. And, this is a form of cruel and unusual punishment. Along with religious discrimination. Both grievances are under investigation, by the inspector general.

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[Censorship] [State Correctional Institution Camp Hill] [Bill Clements Unit] [Santa Rosa Correctional Institution] [Florida State Prison] [Jefferson Correctional Institution] [Coyote Ridge Corrections Center] [Richard A Handlon Correctional Facility] [Stateville Correctional Center] [Virginia] [Pennsylvania] [Texas] [Florida] [Washington] [Missouri] [Michigan] [Illinois] [ULK Issue 59]
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Censors in Their Own Words - November 2017

U.$. imperialist leaders and their labor aristocracy supporters like to criticize other countries for their tight control of the media and other avenues of speech. For instance, many have heard the myths about communist China forcing everyone to think and speak alike. In reality, these stories are a form of censorship of the truth in the United $tates. In China under Mao the government encouraged people to put up posters debating every aspect of political life, to criticize their leaders, and to engage in debate at work and at home. This was an important part of the Cultural Revolution in China. There are a number of books available in this country that give a truthful account, but far more money is put into anti-communist propaganda books. Here in the United $tates free speech is reserved for those with money and power.

In prisons in particular we see so much censorship, especially targeting those who are politically conscious and fighting for their rights. Fighting for our First Amendment right to free speech is a battle that MIM(Prisons) and many prisoners waste a lot of time and money on. For us this is perhaps the most fundamental of requirements for our organizing work. There are prisoners, and some entire prisons (and sometimes entire states) that are denied all mail from MIM(Prisons). This means we can't send in educational material, or study courses, or even supply a guide to fighting censorship. Many prisons regularly censor ULK claiming that the news and information printed within is a "threat to security." For them, printing the truth about what goes on behind bars is dangerous. But if we had the resources to take these cases to court we believe we could win in many cases.

Denying prisoners mail is condemning some people to no contact with the outside world. To highlight this, and the ridiculous and illegal reasons that prisons use to justify this censorship, we will periodically print a summary of some recent censorship incidents in ULK.

We hope that lawyers, paralegals, and those with some legal knowledge will be inspired to get involved and help us with these censorship battles, both behind bars and on the streets. For the full list of censorship incidents, along with copies of appeals and letters from the prison, check out our censorship reporting webpage.

Virginia DOC

The Chair of the publications review committee for the VA DOC, Melissa Welch, sent MIM(Prisons) a letter denying ULK 56, and then the next month the same letter denying ULK 57. Both letters cite the same reasons:

"D. Material, documents, or photographs that emphasize depictions or promotions of violence, disorder, insurrection, terrorist, or criminal activity in violation of state or federal laws or the violation of the Offender Disciplinary Procedure.

"F. Material that depicts, describes, or promotes gang bylaws, initiations, organizational structure, codes, or other gang-related activity or association."

Pennsylvania DOC

Last issue of ULK we reported on the censorship of ULK57 in Pennsylvania. After sending a protest letter to appeal the decision we had a rare victory! From the Policy Office, PA Department of Corrections:
"This is to notify you that the publication in issue does not violate Department Policy. As such, the decision of the correctional institution is reversed and the inmates in the PA Department of Corrections will be permitted to receive the publication. The correctional institutions will be notified by the Policy Office of the decision."

If anyone in PA hasn't received ULK 57 yet, let us know and we will send another copy to you.

Pennsylvania SCI-Camp Hill

From a prisoner we were forwarded a notice of incoming publication denial for ULK 57: "create a danger within the context of the correctional facility" p.21, 24

The description quotes sentences that can't be found within ULK including: "PREA system strip searches for harassment in PA", "Black prisoners deserve to retaliate against predominantly white ran system", and "This is a excellent reminder of PA importance of fighting." They are making up text as reasons for censorship in Pennsylvania.

Texas - Bill Clemens Unit

A prisoner forwarded us a denial for ULK 57 "Page 11 contains information that could cause a prison disruption."

In March 2017, our study pack Defend the Legacy of the Black Panther Party was censored for

"Reason C. Page 9 contains information that could cause a strike or prison disruption."
This adds to the growing list of our most important literature that is banned in the state forever, including Settlers: Mythology of the White Proletariat and [email protected] Power and the Struggle for Aztlan. We need someone with legal expertise to challenge Texas's policies that allow for publications to be banned forever in the state.

Florida - Santa Rosa Correctional Institution

A prisoner forwarded us a notice of impoundment of ULK 57. The reason cited: "Pages 1, 11, 14, 15, & 17 advocates insurgency and disruption of institutional operations."

We appealed this denial and got a response from Dean Peterson, Library Services Administrator for the Florida DOC, reiterating the reasons for impoundment and upholding the denial: "In their regularly scheduled meeting of August 30, 2017 the Literature Review Committee of the Florida Department of Corrections upheld the institution's impoundment and rejected the publication for the grounds stated. This means that issue will not be allowed into our correctional institutions."

Florida DOC

Following up on a case printed in ULK 57 regarding Florida's denial of the MIM(Prisons) censorship pack, for no specific reasons. We received a response to our appeal of this case from the same Dean Peterson, Library Services Administrator, named above.

"From the number of the FDC form you reference and your description of what happened it is apparent the institutional mailroom did not handle the Censorship Guide as a publication, but instead handled it in accordance with the Florida Administrative Code rule for routine mail. As such, the item was not impounded, was not posted to the list of impounded publications for any other institution to see, was not referred to the Literature Review Committee for review, and thus does not appear on the list of rejected publications. That means that if the exact same Guide came to any other inmate mailroom staff would look at it afresh. In theory, it could even be allowed into the institution. ... "The Florida Administrative Code makes no provision for further review."

Florida - Florida State Prison

ULK 58 was rejected for what appears to just be a list of titles of articles, some not even complete:

PGS 6 Liberation schools to organize through the wall (talk about the hunger strikes)
PGS 8 DPRK; White Supremacy's Global Agenda
PGS 11 Case law to help those facing
PGS 19 White and gaining consciousness

Florida - Jefferson Correctional Institution

Meditations on Frantz Fanon's Wretched of the Earth: New Afrikan Revolutionary Writings by James Yaki Sayles was denied to a prisoner at Jefferson Correctional Institution because "inmate has received a second copy of the same edition of this publication violating chapter 33-501.401 (16)(b) and procedure 501.401(7)(d)."

Washington state - Coyote Ridge CC

The invitation to and first assignment for our correspondence introductory study group was rejected by Mailroom Employee April Long for the following reasons:

"Advocates violence against others and/or the overthrow of authority.
Advocates that a protected class or group of individuals is inferior and/or makes such class/group the object of ridicule and/or scorn, and may reasonably be thought to precipitate a violent confrontation between the recipient and a member(s) of the target group. Rejected incoming mailing from MIM. Mailing contains working that appears to be referring to law enforcement as 'pigs' it appears to be ridiculing and scornful. There is also a section in mailing labeled solutions that calls prisoners to take actions against prison industries and gives specific ideas/suggestions. Nothing to forward onto offender."

A recent study assignment for the University of Maoist Thought was also censored at Coyote Ridge. MIM(Prisons) has not yet been informed of this censorship incident by the facility. The study group participant wrote and told us it was censored for being a "copy of copyrighted material." The material in question was published in 1972 in the People's Republic of China. Not only did that government actively work against capitalist concepts such as copyright, we believe that even by the United $tates' own standards this book should not be subject to censorship.

Washington state

Clallam Bay CF rejected ULK 58 because: "Newsletter is being rejected as it talks about September 9 events including offenders commencing a hunger strike until equal treatment, retaliation and legal rights issues are resolved."

Coyote Ridge CC rejected ULK 58 for a different set of reasons: "Contains plans for activity that violates state/federal law, the Washington Administrative Code, Department policy and/or local facet/rules. Contains correspondence, information, or other items relating to another offender(s) without prior approval from the Superintendent/designee: or attempts or conveys unauthorized offender to offender correspondence."

Canada

We received the following report from a Canadian prisoner who had sent us some stamps to pay for a few issues of ULK to be mailed to Canada.

"A few months ago, on July 18, I received notice from the V&C department informing that five issues of ULK had arrived here for me. The notice also explained that the issues had been seized because of a Commissioner's Directive (764.6) which states that '[t]he institutional head may prohibit entry into the institution of material that portrays excessive violence and aggression, or prison violence; or if he or she believes on reasonable grounds that the material would incite inmates to commit similar acts.' I grieved the seizure, among other things, citing the sections on page 2 of ULK, which 'explicitly discourage[s prisoners] from engaging in any violence or illegal acts,' and citing too the UFPP statement of peace on page 3, which speaks of the organizational aim to end needless conflicts and violence within prisons.

"Well, I can now report that my grievance was upheld and that all copies of ULK were released to me, but not without the censorship of drawings deemed to portray or promote the kind of violence described in the above-cited Commissioner's Directive. It's a decision I can live with for now."

Missouri

We got reports from two people that the blanket ban on ULK in Missouri was removed and ULK 58 was received. If you're in Missouri and still not getting your ULK, be sure to let us know.

Michigan - Richard A Handlon CF

ULK 58 was rejected because "Articles in Under Lock & Key contains information about criminal activity that might entice criminal activity within the prison facility - threat to security."

Illinois - Stateville CC

ULK 58 was rejected because: "The publication appears to: Advocate or encourage violence, hatred, or group disruption or it poses an intolerable risk of violence or disruption. Be otherwise detrimental to security, good order, rehabilitation, or discipline or it might facilitate criminal activity or be detrimental to mental health. Detrimental to safety and security of the facility. Disrupts order. Promotes organization and leadership."


Read More Censorship Reports
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[Abuse] [Medical Care] [Santa Rosa Correctional Institution] [Florida]
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Pigs Leave Dead Prisoner in Cell

I want to inform you of an inhumane act that took place here at this institution, where the pigs here let a comrade die. It took place on 29 May 2017 at approximately 1 p.m. Other comrades kept informing the pigs that the comrade in cell F-1121 was in his cell dead. But the pigs that were working at that time didn't do anything, nor did they try to contact medical. Comrades informed the pigs when they went to shower because you could smell the odor. But the pigs laughed and said that he was still alive. That he just urinated and defecated on himself. Because the pigs ordered the comrade to put on hazard suits to put him in a wheelchair and give him a shower the Friday prior. Because the nurses here refuse to bathe him. And he was in this condition for a while at that time.

The only thing that sent the pigs in his room along with medical was that the comrades seen the Lieutenant leaving out this dorm. And the comrades began to scream out their windows. Telling the Lieutenant that the comrade in F-1121 was in his cell dead. That's when the Lieutenant ordered medical to bring him out of his cell. Once, the medical examiners came to take pictures of his cell. That's when it was confirmed that he was in his cell dead. But, the fact of the matter is that the blame falls on the medical department here. Because they were negligent on sending him to the proper institution to accommodate his medical needs. But they were so concerned about keeping him housed in a CM unit (close management) so that they could continue to receive funds for housing him.

So this goes to show you that these pigs cause injustice to us each and every day. And nothing is being done about it. Stories like these need to be told. So that we can put a stop to the modern day torture.

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