Tag Archive: ARAMARK

The Final Straw: Hunger Strike at OSP Youngstown nears 30th day

Pirate_radio_station_5417.jpgFrom Asheville FM

Streaming at AshevilleFM from 3am EST on April 13th through April 19th, 2015, then podcasting at radio4all.net. Also airing this week on KOWA-LPFM in Olympia, WA, KWTF in Bodega Bay, CA, KXCF in Marshall, CA, and WCRS-LP Columbus Community Radio 98.3 and 102.1 FM. The show will later be archived at TheFinalStrawRadio.NoBlogs.Org. Drop us a line at thefinalstrawradio(aT)riseup(dooot)net for suggestions or comments.

This week we’re joined by Imam Siddique Abdullah Hasan, one of 6 prisoners who are almost a month into a solidarity hunger strike at Ohio State Prison in Youngstown to press the Warden about current conditions at the prison. Among the issues the hunger strike is protesting include the inability of all new/incoming prisoners to OSP and those currently on the highest level of security (5B) to attend congregational religious activities, also poor quality of food presented by Aramark (the company contracted to provide meals at OSP, and who’s food services sparked the hunger strike in January of 2014 at Westville Correctional Facility in Indiana) a lack of access to outside recreation for the prisoners and more. You may recall Hasan from a prior interview we did with him on the anniversary of the 1993 Lucasville Prisoner uprising which began because of some of the same issues and for which Hasan is facing the death penalty as an organizer of the beginning of the protest sparking the uprising as well as helping to organize the end of that uprising. The 1993 uprising resulted in the deaths of 9 prisoners (accused of being snitches) and one prison guard. To hear our interview with Hasan from October of 2013, click here.

Also, Sean Swain speaks about the hunger strike at OSP, where he was formerly incarcerated, and the harsh realities of lack of access to human interaction, direct sunlight and the out doors. (more…)

Durham Jail: During demonstration, c.o.’s threaten to beat and taze inmates

durhamFrom Amplify Voices

Hey, —,

I’m glad to hear from someone like you and what you stand for is a real good thing, man. I was sitting in my cell reading the letter you sent me and I seen in one part of the letter you ask me if we could hear or see you all. Yea, we could see y’all outside the jail and on the news, too. I guess whoever has the power over the jail did not like that at all, so they put the whole jail on lockdown meaning that they put us in our cells when we still had time to be out. No showers, no looking at T.V., no phones, and you eat in your cell. The c.o.’s came in and said if we did not lock back they were going to beat and taze us, so we said “Don’t shoot, our hands is up” and we all locked back into our cell. For almost two weeks they were putting the jail on lockdown, and no one knows why, as the c.o.’s say. They taking the V.I. (visitation) from us, saying our fam have to go online to see us. But they still find a way to take our money. Man, it’s crazy, we need help in here!

Thanks 4 lookin out we need you!!! And yeah, I like to read books.

K. C.

The Final Straw: Hunger strike at Westville in IN, Sean Swain radio and more!

This week’s episode of the Final Straw starts off with a couple of announcements about recent prisoner resistance from around the U.S. and the upcoming court dates for the NATO3.

Secondly, we’ll present a short audio essay by Sean Swain, a regularly occurring segment we hope to become a regular portion of our show. Find out more about Sean Swain at http://seanswain.org

This’ll be followed by an interview with Deedee, a member of Saving Our Families, a network of those with loved-ones in the Prison Industrial Complex, based out of Indiana. Deedee is also a supporter of Control Unit Prisoners on hunger strike at Westville Correction Facility in Indiana about the strike and the atrocious food distribution, run by Aramark Corrections Services based out of Philly PA. More info can be found at http://dignityatwestville.wordpress.com


Update from the Collective Struggle inside the Westville Control Unit 10/15

bridgeFrom Rififi Bloomington

Aramark, the private company that won the contract for food at Westville Correctional Facility (a prison in northern Indiana), has enacted drastic cut-backs over the past several months. As a result, hot lunch trays have been replaced with cold, nutritionally deficient sack lunches. One prisoner reports dropping from 215 to 150 pounds during his stint in Westville. Prisoners began refusing these humiliating lunches in collective protest on January 13th, and now their struggle is expanding.

Westville’s Control Unit is divided into four pods, each containing four sections. As the collective protest spreads, it’s expected to involve majorities in all eight sections of A and B pods before the end of the week. Prisoners report that many within the Control Unit are setting aside petty differences in order to support each other and share food.

In response to the start of the protest and the mass call-in day on 1/14, prison bureaucrats are foisting responsibility for the malnourishing lunches onto Aramark. However, we know that the two are acting in collusion; the DOC could act to force the contractor to bring back hot lunches. Prisoners have been inspired by the massive response to the call-in day from around the United States. They are determined to continue until they win.

Now is the time to multiply solidarity actions and pressure against the Indiana DOC and Aramark. Continue calling IDOC Commissioner Bruce Lemmon at (317) 232-5711 and Aramark Correctional Services at (800) 777-7090 (though we’ve heard that they have sometimes stopped picking up in response to the flood of calls they’ve received so far). (more…)

Indiana Prisoner Solidarity: Tuesday January 14th 8am – Emergency Call-in Day

call-inFrom Riffi

On Monday, January 13th, Indiana prisoners being detained in Westville Correctional Facility began to refuse the nutritionally deficient, unappetizing cold sack lunches they have been forced to endure over the past several months and have issued a call for solidarity. A mass call-in, starting at 8am on Tuesday, is being planned to put pressure on IDOC officials and Aramark Correctional Services to reinstitute hot lunch trays.

On Tuesday, let’s show solidarity and inundate IDOC Commissioner Bruce Lemmon 317 232 5711 and Aramark Correctional Services (800) 777-7090 with phone calls demanding the return of hot lunch trays for Indiana prisoners.

Why is this happening?

According to “official” sources, the switch to sack lunches was a 90 day test program launched in response to a prisoner’s request to increase recreation and shower time. Overlooking the absurd proposition that a prison would change its food policy based on a prisoner request for extended recreation time, the fact is that since the conversion to sack lunches, recreation and shower time have not increased, and the 90 day trial period has long since passed.

The truth is more likely to be found in the bottom line and Aramark’s business history. In 2005, Aramark Correctional Services (ACS) signed aquarter billion dollar, ten year contract with the Indiana Department of Corrections to provide meals for inmates. Since then, Indiana DOC has saved more than $11 million a year, spending approximately $1.19 per meal/per prisoner. In other states these savings have been achieved as a result of skimping on food portions and quality. In Florida, an audit of ACS found the company was cutting costs/increasing profits by cutting portions on meals. In Kentucky, similar skimping on portions coupled with a decrease in the quality of food led to food riots in 2009. During the investigation that followed, Aramark refused to provide Kentucky auditors with access to its records, making a claim to their proprietary rights and confidentiality. (more…)