While Governor Brown protests ( read…cries) over the mandate handed down by the three Judge panel, one thing is certain- all 33 prisons in California remain critically over crowded. Brown and CDCr will make the best choice for public safety in releasing prisoners, which should be- releasing the lifer prisoners who sentenced indeterminate sentences. Meaning those that have done their time, plus many, many more YEARS, non violent drug offenders ( who should never have been sent to prison in the first place) and those who pose no danger to the public -the medically incapacitated.
Brown and CDCr together will releases prisoners who will go on to re-offend, then scream “you see! this is what happens when you release prisoners early!!” The bottom line here is they want prisoner release to fail. It all comes down to the money… do not be fooled into thinking its about safety. They have viable choices and clearly it is not about public safety. 62 prisoners have died needless and preventable deaths from Valley Fever since 2005. Those are the ones we KNOW about. Suddenly its a public emergency and isbeing addressed. When Prison Reform Movement wrote to then Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Center for Constitutional Rights, and Human Rights Watch ( back in 05) it was a public health emergency then too. And NOW they want to take some action? How ridiculous is this? How do we explain to the families who have lost their loved ones? Inadequate medical care is no excuse.
Pleasant Valley Prison in Coalinga was built on a former dump site. The hospital directly behind that prison is also built on that same contaminated soil. The state has known about this for years…and done nothing. Not only are prisoners at risk, the staff at both facilities, as well as visitors. On a positive note, the prisoners being kept in Solitary at Pelican Bay filing a class action law suit. IMO, all prisoners locked up in California should take part in a HUGE class action lawsuit against CDCr, the state and the receiver. Sue them all, force them to finally clean things up, once and for all.
California corrections officials say they are still trying to develop a plan to cope with outbreaks of soil-borne valley fever at two prisons, including Avenal. (California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation / April 29, 2013) Via LA TIMES
Here is a round up of articles detailing the incidents of this past week. I ask you all, where is the outrage?
- Valley fever cases spur call to close Avenal prison (fresnobee.com)
- California details plans to reduce prison crowding (sfgate.com)
- Valley Fever Threatens Thousands of California Inmates (medicaldaily.com)
- Are California Prisons Punishing Inmates Based On Race? (prisonreformmovement.wordpress.com)
- California Prison Conditions Driving Prisoners to Suicide (moorbey.wordpress.com)
- CDC probing valley fever outbreaks in two California prisons (latimes.com)
- Motion denied, Governor: Medical neglect is still killing prisoners (prisonreformmovement.wordpress.com)