Diaspora News: Kevin Rashid Johnson Statement on 2018 Prison Strike

Political prisoner Kevin Rashid Johnson shares a message about the reecent repression he experienced after exposing injustices in Virginia and Florida Prisons and the importance of the upcoming prison strike.

FULL TRANSCRIPT

This is Kevin Rashid Johnson. I’m speaking in the interest of the upcoming prisoner strike set to begin August 21st and
carry on until September 9th by prisoners across the nation who
are challenging and coming out in opposition to conditions of social
injustice, abuse, extensive solitary confinement, deprivation of basic rights and necessities, and the general injustices and inhumanities of what today is the largest prison system in the world, the United States.

We call on the general public to give as much support for this struggle and all of those possibly can who engage and join in this struggle because slavery has not been abolished. This is only a continuation of the struggle to abolish slavery in America and we need all possible support and all possible involvement. All power to the people.

When I was just recently returned back to Virginia from Florida and that was in response to some of the challenges we were making down there to the conditions; generally slave labor, the exploitation of the prison and price gouging in the commissary and the packaging services. They were trying to reinstate the entire parole that were taken in exchange for over sentencing credits or time credit and that was something that was initiated under the Operation Push in January of this year where there was a work strike and a commissary strike and based on some of the organizing that was going on and the conditions we were challenging there with respect to some of the abuse that the institution that I was in in Santa Rosa. The guards were systemically involved in manipulating [unintelligible] with each other and some of the abuses that were coming out of the institution that I would publicize through articles.

They apparently contacted Virginia, told Virginia to come come get me. They gave them an ultimatum, I think they contacted them on the 10th of June and told them to have me out of there by the fifteenth.

So they ended up flying me back to Virginia on the twelfth and I was returned to Red Onion. In the following weeks they transferred me from Red Onion to Sussex One and have confined me now to a permanent solitary confinement without any real valid justification. It’s pretty much in response to a lot of the exposure that I’ve been involved in relation to prison abuses and inhumane conditions of these institutions.

That’s pretty much my situation right now. I’d really like to see as much support as possible being given to the you know the series of struggles that are taking place across the country challenging the
slave labor, the prison and abuse in the institution, and those things.

That’s really what I’d like we’re see much of the focus on is what I would call this movement challenging both prison abuse and the ongoing conditions of slave labor in America.

However much attention we can bring outside exposure to these
prevailing conditions I think that would give strong supportive alliances which would not only bolster prisoners’ activism on the inside but would also bring to the public consciousness that there are some extremely oppressive conditions existing within the condition of confinement in America that really need to be addressed.

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