by Yvonne/Hamdiya Cooks
Diana Block, University of California, San Francisco Senior Analyst, (Children?s Cancer and Blood Diseases), founding member of CCWP and Advisory Board member was honored with the prestigious Chancellor?s Award for Public Service from UCSF. Diana was recognized for her volunteer efforts as an advocate and organizer to improve health care for incarcerated women. A special luncheon was held at the University on May 4th where she and other award recipients were honored and received their awards.
Diana has worked in Pediatrics at UCSF for ten years. Her volunteer work is to be commended as she also volunteers as the financial advisor for the Women?s Building in San Francisco and is a steering committee member for Free Battered Women. Her dedication to CCWP has been instrumental to our growth and success. Diana assists in writing grants that contribute to our sustainability. Over the course of the last ten years, Diana has advocated for women in prison in many arenas; she visits prisoners in CCWF, CIW and the Federal Correctional Institution in Dublin, Ca.
As an activist, Diana collects and disseminates information about the long list of medical abuses which have been documented in women?s prisons, including needless deaths due to lack of emergency medical treatment; lack of diagnosis and treatment of such diseases as sickle cell disease, cancer, HIV and hepatitis C; lack of basic preventive health care and grossly inadequate nursing facilities. Diana helped work on legislative hearings about the conditions of health care in prisons, contacted media outlets, written many news articles, and continuously circulates information to the public through presentations to community groups.
CCWP Director Yvonne Cooks shared a few words about Diana. ?I met Diana over 15 years ago during one of her hundreds of visits to incarcerated women?. ?I knew then she could have given her skills and knowledge to the corporate world, however, her life choice was to work alongside the underserved and underrepresented women in society. I respect, appreciate and trust Diana Block?.
This award is well-deserved and long over-due. On behalf of all of us at CCWP inside and out, thank you Diana for your tireless energy and dedication to the well being of women prisoners.
by Yvonne/Hamdiya Cooks