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Ceasing to be slaves: largest Prison Strike in US history

Ceasing to be slaves: largest Prison Strike in US history



2 min

| 2016 |

hits: 2610

Prisoners in the US have been on strike since the 9th of September in more than 30 facilities to protest against their exploitation as workers and the ridiculously low wage they receive in prison, in conditions characteristic of an institutional form of slavery. They demand the payment of real wages, adequate health care, educational programs, and a reduction in life sentences. On September 24th, even guards in several prisons refused to show up at work (without expressing officially their solidarity).

This national strike has been partly organised by the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee (IWOC), a project of the IWW union. Since they started the project in 2014, around 900 prisoners have become members of the union. But the strike has been involving many more prisonners : more than 50.000 participated according to estimates. The use of smuggled mobile phones and social media has been reported to be crucial in the organising.

The mainstream media coverage about the strike is almost inexistant and prisoners are suffering retaliation for their involvement in the protests.

The IWOC is asking for donations to support the prison strike.  They also participate in the publication of the "Incarcerated Worker", a mini-magazine written and edited by prisoners (more information on their website)


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