For Immediate Release:
Prisoners call for nationwide strike on the 45th anniversary of the Attica Uprising
Oakland groups march and rally in support of national prisoner work strike
Sept 9th Oakland, CA – On the 45th anniversary of the Attica Uprising, the most notorious prison rebellion in US history, prisoners across the country have resolved to take on the prison industrial complex again through a massive work stoppage. From the original call from the prisoners:
“To every prisoner in every state and federal institution across this land, we call on you to stop being a slave, to let the crops rot in the plantation fields, to go on strike and cease reproducing the institutions of your confinement.”
Prisoners, the initiators of the call, point to the fact that slavery has never ended in this country and is enumerated in the 13th amendment which states: “neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime..” Supporters and prisoners point to the large number of corporations and states raking in huge profits, through state and federal prisons, by paying prisoners cents per hours of work. Companies such as Victoria’s Secret, Walmart, Starbucks, McDonalds and many others.
Actions are planned in over 50 cities across the US in solidarity with the prisoner’s strike. A large coalition of groups have joined together in this support effort such as: the National Lawyers Guild, Anarchist Black Cross chapters, the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee, Free Alabama Movement, Free Ohio Movement, Free Virgina Movement and many more.
The Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee is a part of the Industrial Workers of the World. Currently, over 800 prisoners are members of IWOC spread across 36 states.
“Slavery is alive and well in this country. Sanctioned and administered by the state. It’s in the best interests of all workers to end prison slavery and we intend on hitting the streets in a loud, powerful way to show these prisoners they are not alone in their fight” said Cole Dorsey from Oakland IWOC.
Oakland IWOC is planning multiple events locally to support the nationwide strike.
Friday, Sept 9 6pm there will be a movie showing, banner making, and discussion at Mosswood Park.
Saturday, Sept 10 1pm there will be a large gathering at Latham Square in downtown Oakland. Strike supporters will visit and protest at some of the corporations located downtown that are benefiting from prison labor.
The Industrial Workers of the World is an over 100 year old labor union founded by women and immigrants. Gaining notoriety in recent years with organizing drives at Starbucks and Jimmy Johns the IWW is the only labor union in the world actively organizing and supporting prisoners.