Endorsement of the 2018 Prison Strike
Game Workers Unite International stands with the incarcerated people who are striking across the United States in search of humane living conditions, access to rehabilitation, and fair pay for labor done while imprisoned.
Prisoners across the United States are striking in response to the deaths of seven inmates - Eddie Gaskins, Joshua Jenkins, Cornelius McClary, Michael Milledge, Damonte Rivera, Corey Scott and Raymond Scott - during a riot in the Lee County Correctional Facility that was caused by overcrowding and negligence by the Department of Corrections. Strikers across the country will be refusing to report to their work assignments, engaging in sit-ins and going on hunger strikes. They do this to fight for their rights as human beings, the ability to be allowed the chance of rehabilitation and to be paid a fair wage for labor done - none of these are unreasonable things and it is a failure of the American penal system that they must fight for this.
Here are some of the demands the prisoners have made:
Immediate improvements to the conditions of prisons and prison policies that recognize the humanity of imprisoned men and women.
An immediate end to prison slavery. All persons imprisoned in any place of detention under United States jurisdiction must be paid the prevailing wage in their state or territory for their labor.
The Prison Litigation Reform Act must be rescinded, allowing imprisoned humans a proper channel to address grievances and violations of their rights.
The Truth in Sentencing Act and the Sentencing Reform Act must be rescinded so that imprisoned humans have a possibility of rehabilitation and parole. No human shall be sentenced to Death by Incarceration or serve any sentence without the possibility of parole.
An immediate end to the racial overcharging, over-sentencing, and parole denials of Black and brown humans. Black humans shall no longer be denied parole because the victim of the crime was white, which is a particular problem in southern states.
An immediate end to racist gang enhancement laws targeting Black and brown humans.
No imprisoned human shall be denied access to rehabilitation programs at their place of detention because of their label as a violent offender.
State prisons must be funded specifically to offer more rehabilitation services.
Pell grants must be reinstated in all US states and territories.
The voting rights of all confined citizens serving prison sentences, pretrial detainees, and so-called “ex-felons” must be counted. Representation is demanded. All voices count!
Regardless of the fact that they are imprisoned, no individual should be denied humane living conditions, nor should they be paid at a massively reduced rate for work done - for the United States’ government to do so is, plainly, modern slavery. We denounce these practices and stand with the prisoners across the nation.
For more information on the strike and to learn how you can help, visit prisonstrike.com.
If you are able, please donate via the official fundraising page.
Game Workers Unite International