On September 13, 1971 the largest prison uprising in U.S. history, which was begun on September 9, 1971 at Attica prison, was brutally suppressed. 33 prisoners and 10 correctional officers were killed in the assault by New York state police ordered by Governor Rockefeller. An important catalyst for the Attica uprising was George Jackson’s assassination by prison guards which happened at San Quentin, three weeks before on August 21, 1971. Learn more at the Attica Means Fight Back panel September 8th.
On Sunday, September 13, 2020 at 5:30 pm we will hold a demonstration and vigil at San Quentin State Prison linking the 1971 state murders at San Quentin and Attica with the criminal negligence that has led to 26 deaths at San Quentin during the COVID pandemic, including twelve death row prisoners. Please find the Facebook event here. We will honor all the incarcerated lives lost across California and the United States due to the state’s ruthless disregard for Black, Brown, Indigenous and all incarcerated people. We will call on Governor Newsom, the CDCr and all state officials to immediately implement a policy of mass release in order to stop the needless deaths.
Sadly, the demands made by incarcerated people in the 1970s remain fundamentally the same in 2020, 49 long years later: recognize the dignity and human rights of all people in prison! We therefore demand that the California Department of Corrections and rehabilitation (CDCr) and Governor Gavin Newsom grant mass releases and rehousing now in order to save the lives of the human beings inside. Find our complete list of demands here.
This event is being organized by No Justice Under Capitalism, California Coalition for Women Prisoners (CCWP) and California Prison Focus and is part of a national month of actions marking the Attica uprising and demanding decarceration now. Check out what is happening around the country to Decarcerate Now!