I am an inmate within the Idaho Department of Corrections. I became aware of the Coronavirus via the news.
A collaborative story project in partnership with Black and Pink Boise, HumanKind, and the Northwest Abortion Access Fund
Human Kind: A Voice for the Inside, the ACLU of Idaho, Black & Pink Boise and the North West Abortion Access Fund has come together in partnership to to amplify the voices of incarcerated folks during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The purpose of this campaign, “Stories from the Inside,” is to hold officials accountable to protecting the health and safety of ALL Idahoans, especially incarcerated and system impacted Idahoans. Our goal is to collect stories from incarcerated folks in order to amplify their voices and experiences from inside and build awareness amongst our community about the ways that COVID-19 is impacting folks inside.
Prisoners are People too!
A message from HumanKind Executive Director, Amber Daniels:
As our country continues to struggle to get through this pandemic, the men and women who are incarcerated and defenseless against this disease are faced with certain expectations and requirements. They are forced to live in confined quarters quarantined and unable to move about, or shower regularly. They are unable to have recreation or regular dining, they are all either in their cells or housing units until further notice, with the exception of a few jobs. Their contact with family and friends has been limited, and they are constantly fearful for their future and the future of their families.
We have started this campaign because the men and women who are incarcerated are people too, they deserve to have a voice. At the beginning of the pandemic, IDOC was asked to consider releasing the men and women who are nonviolent. They were warned that this was going to happen, but they refused to listen to the experts who said this would be a possibility. Now we are faced with the fact that the COVID-19 is confirmed inside the prison.
My goal with the campaign is to give a platform for those who are forced to live with this reality, and so that they might have the opportunity to speak out. We need to know what’s really going on inside the prisons, not the version that those in power want us to believe. Inmates lives matter and they are valid. We need to stand up for them and demand that they receive adequate attention, and care. We need to protect them. This disease doesn’t discriminate and it will kill people and has already all over the country. They need us to be their voices especially now when things are as bad as they are. Our fears have been confirmed and IDOC has failed the men and women who they are supposed to protect.
These are my friends and their families and they could potentially lose their lives because of the negligence showed by the officials running IDOC. They could have avoided this and chose to ignore the warnings. Please stand with us and fight for JUSTICE!!!
If you have a loved one or someone you know that is currently incarcerated and would like to get involved in this campaign, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.