The Voice of the Anti-Imperialist Movement from

Under Lock & Key

Graphic design skills? Help us with our new logo! help out
[Medical Care] [Montana] [ULK Issue 5]
expand

Montana medical neglect threatens lives

I'm writing to let you know what this prison here in Montana is up to concerning my many fallen brothers. For instance, a close brother of mine is having this huge run around with the so-called medical department. He's got all sorts of heart problems and takes multiple medications for his conditions. They took his meds away once and he was made to file all sorts of paperwork on them to get them back. Tell me that wasn't some kind of life threatening game played by the prison officials.

I have another brother who has serious knee problems. It took forever fighting with them and listening to them say "There's nothing wrong with you, it's all in your head," before they agreed to bring in a rehab specialists. This specialists told my brother that his left knee was permanently screwed, which he already knew, but anyhow, he told my brother that he'd recommend a brace for knee support and that he'd be back in a couple of weeks to start working with him. The prison put a kebash on those plans because this was done a month and a half ago and still no brace or a second visit from the specialist.

The way I see it is the prison officials, medical and semi-high ranking staff will do anything to put an extra taxpayers buck in their pocket.

There's also another issue that just makes me split a gut. This place does a lot of racketeering. Take for instance the fact that they took our 13" TVs away and started selling 7" TVs. The 7 inchers were only $100 for a while, then out of the blue they switched vendors and the 7 inchers went up to $200 a piece. Seems to me that somebody's making a killer profit.

chain
[Medical Care] [California] [ULK Issue 5]
expand

Using psychology to drug political prisoners

While here at the California Medical Facility I noticed a lot of things that staff should not be doing. I decided to file 602s against medical staff for their actions dealing with prisoners whose mental state is unstable. For my efforts I have had reprisals taken against me in the form of "keyhea." Keyhea is the practice of staff forcing medications on prisoners, claiming the prisoner is a threat against others and themselves.

To find one a threat to others or to oneself, first the psychologist says that s/he feels the prisoner should be put on keyhea for their own safety and the safety of others. Then another psychologist who is also employed by CDC comes and evaluates the prisoner to determine their mental state, and they are not going to go against their fellow psychologist any more than one of these C/Os will go against another C/O. Then another psychologist is sent in to also do an evaluation of the prisoner's mental state and they are supposed to be an independent party, but they are hired by the Board of Prison Terms, which is an extension of the CDC. If this "independent" person wants to get their contract renewed with the Board of Prison Terms then it is in their best interest to side with the CDC. When I told him this, he got real upset and started to turn red. Everything is in their favor and nothing for the prisoner.

I have met a number of brothers who were high up in the BGF, Black Panthers, Bloods, and Crips, who were taken down by medication so that they couldn't fight the system, and these political prisoners who have the potential to lead other prisoners and teach the younger ones also how to fight the system have had their minds snapped by all the medications, so they never come back from it, and they are never the same again. This is what the system wants because now they can control them.

I am facing something of that situation, medical staff have lied on me saying that I have been banging my head and hands in an attempt to hurt myself. Yet no medical report was ever done. I am not the only one who Dr. Wiltse has done this to, she is targeting Black prisoners to put on keyhea, and once on keyhea, one has no more say so in what they are given and taken. If I'm put on keyhea I know the system is going to try to break my mind by using medications. I assure you that there is nothing wrong with my state of mind, except that I don't go for anything they tell me, and that I stand tall in this ongoing fight against the system. I can't allow myself to fall victim to these perpetrators who are looking to control everyone and anyone they feel is a threat to the system and their way of thinking.

I understand that female staff use sexual exploitation and manipulation on young and political prisoners but keyhea has long since been around, and at least when dealing with female staff who are sexual perpetrators, one is still in charge of their senses and mental facility, but with keyhea one is dependent on them and not in control of one's mind.

MIM(Prisons) adds: The term Keyhea comes from a lawsuit settled in 1986. The CDCR is required by the lawsuit Keyhea v Rushen, to seek a court order authorizing the administration of long term involuntary antipsychotic medication to prisoners who are considered a danger to others or to themselves or believed to be gravely disabled and incompetent to refuse medication.

This article referenced in:
chain
[Medical Care] [Texas] [ULK Issue 5]
expand

Medical neglect in Texas is killing prisoners

I wanted to write and tell you about some of the things that we deal with in this plantation. One of the most serious and blatant violations we deal with is with basic medical services. I have witnessed a prisoner who had an aneurysm that led to a massive stroke. The man went to the person on duty and told him what was going on, first they told him they were busy. When they finally did see him they told him it was gas and go back to his cell. On the way back he had a seizure and they finally got him to the hospital. In less than one week they sent him back and now he is not coherent and the whole left side of his body, including his face, is paralyzed. He can't even walk by himself or feed himself and they put him right back in population.

I've seen 3 people die here because of lack of medical treatment. There was a guy in the same dorm with me who had a history of heart problems. He went to the desk and told the officer on duty what was wrong, that he was having bad chest pains, and the office got medical to give him some pepto and tell him to go back. He came back a while later and told the officer he was still having chest pain so they sent him to the sergeant who told him "I don't care if you die, get out of my face and go to your bunk before I lock you up," The next count time he was found in his bunk dead from a massive heart attack. What makes me so sick is the fact that nothing was done to the officer. What kind of world is this that people charged with authority have such blatant disregard for human life?

This is just a very small part of what goes on in this country where people can invade a country and kill thousands of people and say "oh sorry, we thought you had some bombs" and the public just blindly follows along and it all boils down to this money and greed and people are so wrapped up in their own self-interest. People just accept anything as long as it doesn't affect them. The mentality of this government is they don't care who gets killed or who suffers as long as they get what they want. So how much money is enough? How much oil is enough? How many people need to die before people say screw this, we are tired of being pawns in your game, and stand up and fight?

MIM(Prisons) adds: We agree with this comrade's analysis that the Amerikan public is wrapped up in their own self-interest. This economic interest is served by foreign invasions and the criminal injustice system. Because of this, we would not call these people "pawns" in the game of imperialism, as that implies they are being duped when in fact they are just lining up with their economic interests. Even as the Amerikan economy suffers one of the inevitable crises of capitalism that will cost the public millions of dollars and many people's homes, Amerikans sit at home content to pick between one imperialist president or another. This is why it is so important to focus on the principal contradiction between the imperialists and oppressed nations, both within u.s. borders and around the world. We need to ally with those who truly have an interest in this fight and not sit around hoping that the white Amerikan citizens are going to wake up and fight the system that makes them rich.

chain
[Medical Care] [Texas]
expand

Medical malpractice in Texas

The U.S. Justice Department says there are 33% of disabled people in prison. Texas closed mental health hospitals and a lot of disabled people are now housed in prison.

A disabled person makes $9,000 a year to live on the streets, but TDC makes $32,000 a year to house the same person. In TDC there is no protection for disabled people and most can’t write or think properly to protect themselves from rape, extortion, beatings and mistreatment from staff and medical care.

This is one case out of many that I am trying to bring to light. I was being overdosed at the pill window [where they dispense medicine in the prison]. The pill window staff would give me an odd number of pills repeatedly and when asked why, the reply would be “Take your meds or receive a disciplinary case.” Over the course of this three and a half years, my blood work has come back toxic three times. While this was going on I had over 30 seizures and I started having blackouts. I did not receive treatment for years.

When I first learned that I was being overdosed I told the nurse. The reply was “we don’t do that” so I wrote emergency grievances but they were all kicked out. I requested help from the doctor and he said “he’s crazy” and sent me to the mental health department. Then TDC put me to work while I was still unstable from seizures. I had three seizures at work and they said it was a security issue and put me back to work in the hot kitchen where I had 4 more seizures.

Eventually I talked to a nurse who stopped the overdose of one of my drugs. But the medical department continued to cover up the overdose while the overdose of another drug was still going on. I told the nurse manager that I needed my medical records to show the doctor to stop the seizures and blackouts. She said “we don’t keep those records” then added “some of your records are not for you to see.” Then she told me “get a lawyer.” When my lawyer finally was able to get my medical records, I found that the overdose was deleted from my records. The lawyer asked the nurse manager about this and was told this was a mistake and sent the records again. But the records were not corrected. After repeated appeals and requests for my full records, on the fifth try I got a set of records that show them overdosing me 11 times, but the rest of the dates were changed.

After 2 years I wrote to Senator John Whitmire and to the Texas Medical Board. The Senator faxed a medical release to get my medical records and within two weeks the doctor called me in and asked me what was wrong. I told him “seizures, blackouts, confusion, and I could not eat.” He asked how long and I told him I had been reporting all this for the past two years. He said he would send me to a neurologist.

Then my letter from the Texas Medical Board came and the response said “the doctor is now under investigation for what he has done and now his case is in the director of enforcement.”

My last seizure was August 2007 and I was sent to the emergency room. There I weighed 148 pounds, that is a loss of 52 pounds from this treatment. My appointment with a neurologist showed neurological problems. So I filed a case in federal court and was denied counsel. Now I must represent myself.

This is going on in prison. There was a man who died August 9, 2007 from seizures from the same treatment I was getting. If they have the ability to change my records, then they will change anyone's and get away with it.

chain
[Control Units] [Medical Care] [Arizona] [ULK Issue 4]
expand

Budget cutback on meal menus

Recently, as of May 2008, we Arizona prisoners have had another cutback to our food menu. DOC has now started "a heart healthy diet" and has managed to cut back, even further, our calories. This is on top of the cutback we have automatically in lockdown at this control unit. This clever budget cut has been hidden behind platitudinous drivel aimed at protecting our best interest as health issues. As vegetarians, we have been especially hit hard, losing up to half or more of what we had before. The usual procedures allowed us are a waste of time in protesting this recent farce of economy shaving being perpetuated against us prisoners under the pretend guise of our best interests.

A heartfelt thanks for letting the voice of us prisoners be heard and let known generally amongst the publik. From this AZ gulag, up the system, strength in solidarity!

chain
[Medical Care] [California]
expand

No improvement in health care in California prisons

I just read Under Lock and Key from 2007 and it concerned the health care in California prisons. I'm sending along a copy of an article from the Sacramento Bee by Don Thompson of the Associated Press. It explains that Federal Receiver Robert Sillew's report shows there is very little change in health care in California prisons as of March 2008. Mr. J. Clark Kelso is the new federal receiver.

I have been in prison for 11 1/2 years for resisting arrest. I was given a life sentence under California's Three Strikes Law. Since I've been in prison I've known three prisoners personally who died from liver failure. Each man told me they did not receive proper care from the medical services. The CDCR needs more qualified doctors and more medical and mental prisons, but until the over population problem (173,000 prisoners) is solved, there will continue to be people dying. We need to be seen as human beings, not cattle.

chain
[Medical Care] [California]
expand

Flush limits on toilets needs challenge

Salutations and respect to all the progressives working on behalf of the people there.

I'd like to find out of anyone has heard of and/or successfully challenged CDCR's new policy concerning controlled flushes on the toilets this institution (SVSP) is now in the process of installing them here and I've heard they've been placed in other institutions across the state as well.

It goes without saying with the California overpopulation and lockdown crisis as well as the inadequate and broken health care system, this new diabolical scheme by CDCR will surely cause a lot more prisoner suffering, if not properly challenged.

Any and all information on this subject matter will be greatly appreciated.

Faithfully strugglin'

chain
[Medical Care] [California]
expand

Overcrowding, poor food and poor medical care common in California

Let me begin this summary stating that this institution is and has been overcrowded. The actual count it is supposed to hold escapes me, but I am very sure it has been exceeded by 2000. The overpopulation is very apparent since we now are stacked on triple bunk beds which were once doubles. The gymnasiums have been converted into housing units which hold up to 200+ people in an area designed for full court basketball. The inmate to correctional guard ratio is around 50 to 1. As a result of the overpopulation, there have been many infections caused by poor sanitation and the close quartering. Infections range from Staph to ringworm and even tetanus. Not to mention the fact that the facility was built in an area that has a high rate of valley fever.

The food is meager, but I really shouldn't complain since there are far worse prisons in other countries. Protein makes few appearances in this diet. Medical has been slightly revived in the last few months since the federal government's threats to come in and clean the place up. A lot of people look forward to them coming in, but we will have to wait and see if they really change anything. Luckily, mail here isn't heavily censored, but things often change quickly around here.

One of the things I have noticed is the fact that this prison houses a lot of lifers. Now, you would wonder why does this prison accept so many lifers, but it is easily observed when you see the work rosters for PIA (Prison Industry Authority). They employ a large number of lifers to work in their factories for small wages. In facility II, where I currently reside, we have the furniture factory where the inmates make furniture for resale to the state. Where these profits go, no one knows. Information is kept and rarely shared with the prison population, causing a lot of frustration and uncertainty.

This is just a brief summary to outline some of the conditions that we live in. A lot of the prison population states that these conditions have been getting worse. We remain vigilant for any improvements.

This article referenced in:
chain
[Medical Care] [California]
expand

Medical Neglect in California

It is with pleasure, plus an urgency now that I have had time to read and sift through the MIM Notes you have sent me. As I began to go over the MIM Notes I noticed a lot of times we are of similar minds in the same thinking mode.

I am in a position to sue this particular institution/prison for what one can call straight out medical negligence. I have already begun with the grievance part being submitted.

I came to this institution in April of 2005. I was diagnosed with cancer in April of 2007. In May or June I had a seizure that busted my lower lip. At that point I began to submit paperwork as well as complain about pain, also bleeding that never was able to be stopped or controlled in any way.

It was as though my complaints of pain, as well as visual bleeding, sometimes even cracked lips, were of no concern, or even taken seriously. It was in early 2007 that a psychiatrist took it upon herself to get involved. I had been telling her about how much pain that I was in constantly, and this institution's yard doctor at that time would not send me out to an outside doctor or hospital for a real consultation. Instead for some reason they kept trying to keep it all in house. I kept telling her that they were trying to hide something, sweep something under the rug, even trying to slip something past me knowing my mental health was not up to par at times.

I was finally diagnosed with a type of cancer that attacked my lower lip mostly on the right side. I have had surgery on the bottom lip, as well as my throat cut. All this in a 9.5 hour surgery. I am doing radiation now 5 days a week, and I will probably have another surgery once radiation is finished.

I have taken it upon myself to get all my medical records Xeroxed in case this ever gets into a he says - she says predicament. Now my problem is I need a lawyer, I want to sue as well as expose the medical mistreatment in this system. It took close to two years to get the actual medical help that I needed and deserved to have. I have all the names of the players as well as their positions, plus their positions when it comes to me and this matter.

MIM adds: We hope that by publishing stories like this one we will both inform our readers about the injustice and outright negligence in the Amerikan prison system, and also inspire our readers to get involved in the fight against the criminal injustice system. It's not just individual cases that need to be tackled, but the entire system that is causing unnecessary deaths and suffering. The health care in California prisons is so bad that U.S. District Court Judge Thelton Henderson placed the prison health care system in receivership in 2005 after finding it responsible for as many as 34 prisoner deaths and far more cases of negligence.

chain
[Medical Care] [Abuse] [Spanish] [Clinton Correctional Facility] [New York]
expand

Abuso del Medico en Clinton Correctional Facility

Quiero dejarle saber lo que me hacen aqui los oficiales. El 7/8/07 el oficial J. Cross le puso veneno o algo a los tres unsources que me dan el medico. Porque el mismo me lo dijo. Y ademas pase el dia vomitando y estoy enfermo desde ese dia. La enfermera hizo un reporte de este incidente. Y el 6/22/07 este oficial me boto todos mis medicinas. Y cuando trabaja no me dan comida, y le dice a los otros oficiales que no me den comida y no me dan comida. Y me tiene amenazado de muerte, y no puedo ir a la clinica a ver al medico porque me quieren golpearme los oficiales de la clinica porque el oficial J. Cross le dijo.

El 6/22/07 mi madre me mando unos libros y el oficial Bruce no quiere darmelo, aunque tengo los recibos de los libros. Aqui no me dan el baño ni la hora de la recreación que tiene que darme mandatoriamente.

Ademas, apagan las camaras de video, y me acusan de cosas que no hice, y me dan tigues. Ademas, aqui no me procesan los grievances. Los Sargentos W. Bisso y Giambruno son lo primero racistas y abusadores. Y el Superintende no hace nada por mi aunque le enseño las pruebas de los abuses de los oficiales contra mi.

Le escribí al Commissioner en Albany para que me ayude, y me saque de Clinton y no han hecho nada por mi tampoco. Ayudemen si pueden para salir de Clinton porque mi vida esta en peligro con los oficiales y los sargentos.

chain