Human Rights Day Rally

On December 10th 2003 — International Human
Rights Day — rallies demanding that Governor
Schwarzenegger, Bring Our Prisoners Home! took
place in San Francisco and San Diego. In San
Francisco over 75 people gathered at the State
Building. Petitions containing 4,000 signatures,
which had been circulated by women prisoners all
over California, were presented to the Governor’s
representative by a delegation of family members,
former prisoners and advocates. The
representative listened closely to the points
that the delegation raised regarding parole,
three strikes and compassionate release and
promised to pass the concerns on to the Governor.
In the street, the crowd listened to a variety of
moving speakers, including former prisoner Alice
Moore who insisted that drug convictions don’t
mean that you are a bad person or should be
discriminated against. An inspired hip-hop
performance speaking to prison injustices caused
people walking and driving by to stop and find
out what was going on.
In San Diego, CCWP and other groups held a silent
vigil in support of the release of women
prisoners including Jeri Becker (who has since
been released) and Theresa Cruz. A former parole
officer and a minister from Families to Amend
Three Strikes voiced their hope that
Schwarzenegger would release more people from
Building off the December 10th rally, Bay Area
CCWP has joined with All of Us or None to
organize a series of Peace and Justice Summits in
neighborhoods around the Bay Area. The Summits
will be a chance for people from the community –
people who have been in prison or whose parents
or family members are in prison – to tell their
stories to elected officials and demand change.