Updated Action Alert for Robert Seth Hayes

powmedicaljustice.com

Monday, May 18:

Seth’s medical condition continues to worsen, and he has not been evaluated or treated for potentially life-threatening symptoms despite following formal medical care request procedures within the prison.  Because the medical staff at the prison and Health Services of the Department of Correction continue to neglect his medical needs despite numerous calls from concerned medical providers and other citizens, we are urging both Commissioner Annucci and Governor Cuomo to exercise oversight and see to it that Seth finally receives proper medical care.

*Talking points and sample letter below*

THINGS YOU CAN DO:

1) On Tuesday, 5/19 and Wednesday, 5/20 please call:

*Governor Andrew M. Cuomo at (518) 474-8390 x2

*Acting Commissioner Anthony J. Annucci, NYS Department of Corrections at (518) 457-8134

2) On Thursday, 5/21 and Friday, 5/22, please fax (you can use a free online fax service like faxzero.com if needed):

*Governor Cuomo at Fax: (518) 486-4466

*Acting Commissioner Anthony J. Annucci at Fax: (518) 457-0076

***Suggested talking points***

State who you are calling about and include his prisoner #: Robert Seth Hayes, #74-A-2280, at Sullivan Correctional Facility;

Say that you are requesting oversight of the medical team at Sullivan and DOCC Health Services as well as:

1) an immediate work-up of his cough and shortness of breath;
2) an assessment of his weight loss to have potential malignancies ruled out;
3) modification of his insulin regimen to better control his diabetes and prevent low blood sugars; and
4) a physician’s order for a diabetic diet.

Please email nycjericho@gmail.com and let us know what response you receive so that it can be given to Seth’s legal team.

A SAMPLE LETTER to fax, mail or submit online:

The Honorable Andrew M. Cuomo
Governor of New York State
NYS State Capitol Building
Albany, NY 12224
Fax: (518) 486-4466

Dear Governor Cuomo,

I am writing in regards to Robert Seth Hayes, #74-A-2280, DOB 10-15-48, who is currently at Sullivan Correctional Facility in Fallsburg, NY.

Mr. Hayes suffers from poorly controlled diabetes mellitus with frequent bouts of hypoglycemia, as well as weight loss of 40 pounds (22% of his original body weight) in a short time. These health concerns have not been addressed by medical staff at Sullivan Correctional Institute despite numerous requests by the patient, family, concerned medical providers, and the general public. He has not even been prescribed a diabetic diet.

In addition, Mr. Hayes’s medical situation has worsened dramatically recently. He has had a cough with shortness of breath and is coughing up blood tinged mucus. He needs an evaluation of his cough and shortness of breath urgently.

I am writing to register my grave concern about the health of Mr. Hayes and to request that he receive the following immediate and appropriate medical care:

1) an urgent evaluation of his cough and shortness of breath;
2) a work-up of his weight loss to assess for potential malignancies;
3) a modification of his insulin regimen to better control his diabetes and prevent episodes of hypoglycemia; and
4) a diabetic diet.

I thank you for your prompt attention to these medical matters.

Sincerely,

Updated Action Alert for Mumia Abu-Jamal

Sunday, May 17:

The following is a statement released by: International Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal, International Action Center, Free Mumia Abu-Jamal Coalition (NYC), Campaign to Bring Mumia Home, Educators for Mumia Abu-Jamal

Mumia once again taken to hospital outside SCI Mahanoy; held incommunicado from family, attorneys and doctor.  We need to act now!

Political prisoner and internationally renowned journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal has once again been taken from the prison infirmary at SCI Mahonoy in Frackville , Pa. this time to Geisinger Medical Center in Dansville , Pa. about 3 hours from Philadelphia .

Having received no phone calls from Mumia, including on Mothers’ Day when he always calls, Mumia’s wife Wadiya Jamal called the prison infirmary on Tuesday, May 12 and learned of the transfer.  Since then Mumia has been out of communication with his immediate family and doctor, despite the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections’ obligation and agreement to keep Mrs. Jamal informed of his medical condition.

State regulations also prohibit prison officials from blocking attorney’s access to their clients however visits by his attorneys have also been denied.

On Wednesday, May 13 Wadiya was told that immediate family visitation was approved by Superintendent John Kerestes and the DOC.  This was confirmed by Laura Neal of the DOC Legal Counsel’s office.

Wadiya prepared to visit Mumia at the hospital on Wednesday, May 13, however she was then told by Neal that Geisinger Hospital would not permit the visit because Mumia was not in critical condition and the hospital has a policy of not allowing visits to prisoners.

Mumia’s family and attorneys have been given conflicting reports that updates on his medical condition were released to authorities at SCI Mahonoy.  Wadiya was told repeatedly by medical officials at SCI Mahonoy that no medical updates were given to them.  However Donald Zaycosky, Litigation Counsel at Geisinger told Rachel Wolkenstein, an attorney representing Wadiya Jamal, that a medical update had been provided to infirmary doctors on Thursday, May 14.

Wolkenstein reported that on Friday May 15, Zaycosky stated that under the circumstances an exception could be made to the hospital’s “no visitors” policy.  He explicitly stated that Geisinger did not object to phone calls or family or legal visitation, but wanted to make sure it was OK with the DOC.

On 9:30am Friday, May 15, Wolkenstein forwarded Zaycosky her correspondence with Laura Neal that stated the DOC approved family visitation.  Since then, despite phone calls and emails, there has been no communication from either the prison infirmary or the hospital regarding either medical updates on Mumia’s condition or to confirm or deny family visitations.

Mumia’s family, attorneys and supporters are extremely worried about his current medical condition and alarmed that he is being held incommunicado while his wife, legal counsel and his private doctor are being denied any access to him.

When Mumia was first rushed to the emergency room this March in diabetic shock, a global network of supporters sprang into action to inundate phone lines of prison and hospital officials demanding that they allow visitation from his family and attorneys.  Once again it’s time to activate that support.

Just last week supporters delivered a letter to Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf calling on him to release Mumia from prison in order to get the proper medical care he needs.  It was signed by numerous world dignitaries, including South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Minister Louis Farrakhan, Former President of the UN General Assembly, Father Miguel d’Escoto Brockmann, New York  Congressman Charles Rangel, President of Local 1199 SEIU, George Gresham, Danny Glover, Alice Walker and many more.  For the full letter and list of signers, click here.

Please call the officials below to demand:

-Unrestricted hospital visitations by Mumia’s family,
-Demand access for his attorneys
-Let Mumia call family, supporters and doctors
-Stop state’s attempt to murder Mumia by medical mistreatment
-Release Mumia from prison to be able to obtain needed health care.

Use these demands appropriately for each of these venues.  So with the hospital, we want to emphasize the access and communication issues, the first three demands.

Geisinger Medical Center – 570-271-6211
DOC Secretary John Wetzel – 717-728-2573;  ra-crpadocsecretary@pa.gov
PA Gov. Tom Wolf –717-787-2500; fax: 717-772-8284; governor@pa.gov

Note:  The hospital has Mumia on a “confidential” list so the operators will say they have no one named Mumia Abu-Jamal or Wesley Cook at the hospital. People should tell the operator that their call should be reported to the hospital administration and use both names.

CMU taking special interest in Kevin’s communications

From supportkevinandtyler.com:

Sorting-Mail

Things have taken a turn for the worse since the last update about the BOP restricting Kevin’s communications. Earlier this week, Kevin was notified that the Communications Management Unit (CMU) had taken a special interest in his correspondence with the outside world. Please read this post in its entirety to get necessary information on staying in touch with our friend.

[Note: If you’re not yet familiar with CMUs, check out Will Potter’s 2009 report on these draconian institutions.]

Using the terms “animal liberation” & “earth liberation”
In short, stop doing it. Apparently the CMU is tallying the number of times these terms are used in letters to Kevin as some crude form of “investigating” (or just intimidating) him and his contacts. Yes, it smacks of censorship. No, it’s not fair. But since the prosecution is seeking longterm, stringent incarceration for Kevin, it’s important not to give them any ammunition to hurt him further.

And don’t try to be clever by talking about a liberation without using the term. Obviously the government is going to decode it. Please leave all mentions of extra-legal activity—no matter how heroic or exciting—out of your letters to Kevin.

People currently under investigation
Of course, most of us have no idea who’s being investigated and who’s not—that’s the nature of how the FBI works and they’re not keen on giving up their records. Simply put, Kevin cannot receive correspondence from anyone under federal investigation. 

More on these new restrictions
Kevin’s communication is being handled in such a sensitive way that every letter (even if it comes from someone Kevin doesn’t know personally, and even if he’s unaware of the contents of said letter) can have grave impacts upon his conditions of confinement. We simply ask that you take caution when writing to him, keep everything PG-13, and consider making a donation if you don’t feel comfortable sending a letter.

***

Please send Kevin a letter of support:
(Note: Kevin Johnson is his legal name.)

KEVIN JOHNSON 47353-424
MCC Chicago
Metropolitan Correctional Center
71 West Van Buren Street
Chicago, IL 60605

Tyler Lang was released from state custody in November 2013. He is currently out on bond awaiting trial on the federal charges.

Seth Hayes’ Health Deteriorates -> Call & Fax this week

POW Medical Justice:

Since the campaign began last week, Seth’s medical situation has actually worsened. He has had a cough for over a week with shortness of breath. He is also intermittently coughing up blood tinged mucous. He has not been evaluated or treated for these symptoms.

We must keep the pressure on and be consistent, insistent and persistent to make sure we do not lose yet another of our beloved freedom fighters due to deliberate medical neglect.

****Please join our phone and fax campaign!****
*Talking points and sample letter below*

THINGS YOU CAN DO:

1) On Wednesday, 5/6 please call:

***Acting Commissioner Anthony J. Annucci, NYS Department of Corrections at (518) 457-8134

***Dr. Carl J. Koenigsmann, Chief Medical Officer, DOCCS Division of Health Services at (518) 457-7073

***Nancy A. Lyng, MS, Director of Health Services, at (518) 445-6176

2) On Friday, 5/8, please fax (you can use a free online fax service like faxzero.com if needed):

***Acting Commissioner Anthony J. Annucci at Fax: (518) 457-0076

***Dr. Carl J. Koenigsmann M.D. at Fax: (518) 445-7553

***Nancy A. Lyng, MS at Fax: (518) 445-6157

***Suggested talking points***

State who you are calling about and include his prisoner #: Robert Seth Hayes, #74-A-2280 at Sullivan Correctional Facility;

Say that you are requesting:
1) an immediate work-up of his cough and shortness of breath;
2) an assessment of his weight loss to have potential malignancies ruled out;
3) modification of his insulin regimen to better control his diabetes and prevent low blood sugars; and
4) a physician’s order for a diabetic diet.

Please email nycjericho@gmail.com and let us know what response you receive.

HERE IS A SAMPLE LETTER YOU CAN FAX OR MAIL

Carl J. Koenigsmann M.D.
Deputy Commissioner/Chief Medical Officer
NYS DOCCS Division of Health Services
Harriman State Campus, Building #2
1220 Washington Avenue
Albany, New York 12226-2050
Fax: (518) 445-7553

Dear Dr. Koenigsmann,

I am writing on behalf of Robert Seth Hayes, #74-A-2280, DOB 10-15-48, who is currently at Sullivan Correctional Facility in Fallsburg, NY.

Mr. Hayes suffers from poorly controlled diabetes mellitus with frequent bouts of hypoglycemia, as well as weight loss of 40 pounds (22% of his original body weight) in a short time. These health concerns have not been addressed by medical staff at Sullivan Correctional Institute despite numerous requests by the patient, family, concerned medical providers, and the general public. He has not even been prescribed a diabetic diet.

In addition, Mr. Hayes’s medical situation has worsened in the last week. He has had a cough with shortness of breath and is coughing up blood tinged mucus. He needs an evaluation of his cough and shortness of breath urgently.

I am writing to register my grave concern about the health of Mr. Hayes and to request that he receive the following immediate and appropriate medical care:

1) an urgent evaluation of his cough and shortness of breath;
2) a work-up of his weight loss to assess for potential malignancies;
3) a modification of his insulin regimen to better control his diabetes and prevent episodes of hypoglycemia; and
4) a diabetic diet.

I thank you for your prompt attention to these medical matters.

Sincerely,

Denver Community Organizer Arrested – Call out for Jail Solidarity

May 5th, 2015 11am
UPDATE! Dave has been bonded out, and is out of jail. Thank you everyone. Thankyou, thankyou, thankyou.
much love
dabc
May 4th,2015 Denver
Denver community organizer Dave Strano has been arrested again in the wake of Wednesday’s Baltimore Solidarity protest.  He was originally arrested with misdemeanor charges of interference, resistance and assault. He was bonded out on Thursday morning and released later that day. He was pulled over tonight at 5:30pm with his children in the car, after DPD followed him home. It appears that immediately after his release on Thursday, DPD changed his charges from misdemeanor to felony assault on an officer and issued a warrant. 
At the Baltimore solidarity protest on Wednesday night, police attacked the protesters on the sidewalk and in the park, cornering them between motorcylces and busses and maliciously pepper spraying the crowd, including 12 year old children.
Dave was assaulted and received injuries by the police, including a gash to his head, a broken clavicle and a twisted knee. He was take to the hospital where he was left shackled to the bed covered in pepper spray, and they refused to provide him with crutches after 8 hours. His friends were able to to bring crutches to the jail so that he could walk when he was finally released.
IMG_3653
In the past few months Denver police have been issuing felony assault charges to people they themselves have assaulted during protests. These charges are then reduced or dropped later for lack of evidence. The police have been recorded many times lying about what happened, and then being disproved with video evidence.
It is a corrupt intimidation tactic to silence people who are speaking out against police murder.
Dave is currently in custody with a bond of $5,000. 
We will be gathering at the Van Cise Simonet Detention Center at 9pm tonight (Monday) in solidarity to wait for his fingerprints to clear. Please be aware that this is not at all intended to disrupt the jail proceedings, please be respectful of Dave’s family in order to learn as much as we can about his current condition and status. 
If you would like to donate to the Denver ABC bond/jail support fund please do so through our fundly
or paypal denverabc@riseup.net

Denver protesters released

All 11 protesters who were arrested at the Baltimore solidarityy action on Wednesday night have been bonded out by the kindness of internet donations, family members and friends. All have been released except one who will be out early tomorrow morning. SOLIDARITY.

 

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June 11, 2015 : TRANSITION : The struggle’s not over…

From June11.org

j11_heart final

The last year has been full of changes and transitions for our imprisoned comrades and for those of us engaged in struggle on the other side of the walls. Now, solidly in the throes of spring, we feel compelled to celebrate these transitions and victories as new life and energy burst forth all around us. It is not often that we get a chance to truly mix celebration and struggle – but now is one of those times! On January 8th of this year the Eastern District Court of California ordered Eric McDavid released from prison. Our comrade Marius came out publicly as a man and began seeking resources for his physical transition. We believe these are both transitions worthy of celebration and reason for continued struggle. It is in this spirit that we bring you our thoughts about J11 2015.

First, a bit of housekeeping: We have a new email address: june11th at riseup dot net! If you sent something to the old address, it is likely we did not receive it. We would love it if there were many translations of this callout and other support materials (many thanks to ContraInfo and others for supporting translation over the years)! Please send information about the June 11th events you are planning this year, posters, zines, and any report backs to june11th at riseup dot net. We are looking forward to hearing from you and will post events as we receive them at June11.org Every year events happen in new cities, and we hope you’ll encourage your friends and comrades far and wide to join us this year.

This day is an annual day of solidarity with long-term anarchist prisoners, including Marius Mason and Eric McDavid. In calling for the day, we aim to deepen ongoing support for comrades facing long sentences. They, in particular, risk being forgotten within a prisoner support model based on reacting to spikes in state repression and other emergencies. We are committed to building a model of solidarity that is both long-term and capable of flexibly responding to new developments. It is also vital to constantly build new links of solidarity between prisoners and between struggles, rather than fall back on static networks of personal links and contacts.

Originating as a day of solidarity for eco-prisoners, J11 remains anchored in a project of ecological defense and struggle against a society based on exploitation and confinement. As the focus shifted to solidarity with Marius and Eric, two eco-anarchist prisoners serving roughly 20-year sentences, people have expressed their solidarity through letter-writing nights, fundraisers, educational events, demonstrations and attacks. Any real effort to aid prisoners cannot be based simply on passive support, but must also include a commitment to build on their struggles before and after their imprisonment. More explanation about the context for and strategy of June 11th can be found here: http://june11.org/about/

Last year, while organizing J11 events, we addressed challenging questions about the relationship between ecologically oriented struggles and anarchist anti-prison struggles. It is clear to us that the world which requires prisons also requires the destruction of the environment; as anarchists, we despise both. We are heartened by the growing movements against the tar sands, LNG pipelines, fracking and the myriad other ecologically destructive projects. The escalation of eco-struggles across the globe is both necessary and exciting. Both Marius and Eric remain committed to these struggles, as we remain committed to them, all eco-prisoners, and the struggles that they all – we all – are engaged in. But this year we have been given cause for celebration – and we would like to emphasize that as we move forward.

This year Marius Mason publicly shared his new name and use of male pronouns that better reflect his masculine gender identity. To quote his lawyer, Moira Meltzer-Cohen who is assisting with the legal aspects of his transition, Marius is someone “whose courage and integrity are made even more salient by the fact that his own liberation and autonomy have long been severely circumscribed.” In the face of a world that systematically subjects trans people to violence, isolation and abuse, we hope that everyone shows their support of trans liberation by supporting Marius and the many imprisoned trans folks. This struggle should extend beyond mere fundraising. Trans prisoners are struggling not only for the material necessities of existence, but are also struggling against systems of domination which will stop at nothing to prevent them from simply being who they are. Our solidarity needs to be as creative and varied as the state’s tactics are cruel and oppressive.

On January 8th of this year, Eric McDavid was released from prison after nine years of incarceration. Eric returned home to his friends and family after a federal court granted his habeus corpus petition, stating that the FBI withheld evidence during the trial phase of his case. Because of this, Eric was able to plead guilty to a lesser charge which carried a five year maximum sentence – four years less than the time he had already served in federal prison. Eric’s incredible determination and the awe-inspiring support from his family, friends and comrades have not only contributed to his emotional and physical well-being while behind bars but also to his eventual release. His release from prison after 9 years is a monumental change. Eric is now faced with building a new life after almost a decade of incarceration. This is a new phase of struggle for him, and we are committed to continuing our solidarity with him post-release.

We face new questions about how to help Eric during this transition from a heavily controlled prison environment to a life in the open prison (the conditions that overlap between Eric’s parole and the society of control in which we all live). Although he is no longer living his life in a cage of concrete and razor wire, Eric still constantly faces the repressive apparatus of the state. His movements are restricted, his communications monitored, and his time is spent in ways that aren’t always of his choosing. All of this limits his interactions with the communities he has been away from for so long, the communities he wishes to engage with and be a part of. We must figure out how to lessen the impacts of these kinds of restrictions and how to enable as smooth a transition and homecoming as possible. We are thrilled to be facing these questions nine years earlier than we’d expected.

The focus of June 11th events this year will continue to include Eric by aiding him materially and emotionally during this transition and maintaining channels for political engagement concerning Eric’s entrapment. Eric’s case remains one of the most obvious examples of the state targeting and entrapping anarchists in this country. But we must always remember that his case is in no way exceptional. Muslim communities have borne the brunt of these kinds of attacks from the FBI. We should always be finding ways to work in solidarity. Post release support is a vital component to our struggle, and we’re obviously thrilled beyond words that Eric can walk and talk among friends and Earth according to his own desires again, and with every step we affirm that we want the destruction of all prisons.

The practices of ongoing solidarity should not solely serve as a soothing cultural custom: our actions carry potential for real material consequences — both positive and negative — for our imprisoned comrades. As we practice solidarity with imprisoned comrades and loved ones, our goal goes beyond simply supporting them; we aim to build social momentum against an entire system of domination and ecological destruction. These linkages add significance to all our gestures of solidarity, rendering them more potent tools on behalf of those inside, but also increasing the risks should these gestures be miscalculated or imprecise: as always, exercise care and sharp analysis when laying plans.

This reflection applies to the entire range of support projects, including fundraising. We hope though, that fundraisers also create spaces for discussion and struggle. A common anxiety among comrades facing long sentences is whether there will still be subversive projects and conversations underway when they get out. It’s up to all of us to make sure that there are, and that these projects and conversations are stronger, richer, and more vital. And it’s everyone’s letters to prisoners that ensure their ongoing connection to this process.

A specific element of this process is building our capacity for ongoing prisoner support. There have been both victories and setbacks over the past year as anarchist and other rebellious prisoners have waged struggles against their conditions, including both hunger and work strikes. Nikos Romanos’ hunger strike and the accompanying revolutionary solidarity reminded us of the subversive possibility of struggles coordinated across prison walls. But as anarchist prisoners, like Sean Swain in Ohio or Michael Kimble in Alabama, increasingly conduct similar fights in North America, the movement has frequently lacked the connections or strength required to offer meaningful solidarity. This is not a criticism of the dedicated support crews working with these rebel prisoners, but is directed to the rest of us, indicating the importance of generalizing active forms of solidarity with prisoners.

An important aspect of the long-term project of prisoner solidarity is maintaining old connections while building new connections with other prisoners in struggle. Recently released comrades Amelie and Fallon encompassed this idea well in their February open letter http://en.contrainfo.espiv.net/2015/02/17/mexican-prisons-open-letter-of<http://en.contrainfo.espiv.net/2015/02/17/mexican-prisons-open-letter-of-amelie-pelletier-and-fallon-poisson-february-14-2015/> Generalizing solidarity means escaping the space of the small “activist scene” to allow surprising new relationships to form. Part of our proposal this year is to build stronger relations of solidarity with trans prisoners in struggle, both to offer immediate personal and political support, and to prepare to offer more meaningful aid in future struggles for safety, hormones/other medical resources, and dignity. http://supportmariusmason.org/2014/07/07/free-marius-jacob-mason/ We were inspired by Chelsea Manning, who won access to hormones despite very adverse conditions, dramatically indicating the possibility of future victories for other trans prisoners.

We will continue to adapt to a changing landscape produced both by the victories won by our imprisoned comrades — including Eric’s release, Marius’ coming out, Nikos Romanos’ seizure of “room to breathe,” and just in the past few days, the amazing homecoming of Amelie, Carlos, and Fallon, — and by ongoing transformations of the repressive machinery. These transitions mark the expansion of the project and not any sort of stopping point.

“The struggle is not over … it assumes new forms. For no matter what the face, no matter what the name, it’s still war.”

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