Call for Email Zap Against Regulations at Columbia Correctional Institution: 6/25/18

Milwaukee IWOC is calling for people who want to end toxic regulations at Columbia Correctional Institution to participate in an email zap against this prison on Monday, 6/25/18, between 6:00 AM and 10:00 PM. More details, sample script and link to statements by Columbia’s prisoners are below.

Thank you for taking the time to help with this email blast

This is the beginning of a public pressure campaign to address a toxic situation at Columbia Correctional Institution near Portage, Wisconsin. Inside members of IWOC are already engaged in significant organizing and resistance on the inside. Pushing with them against the arbitrary regulations and unjust conditions they experience can reduce the daily torture incarcerated people face, support their resistance and give them space to organize further.

How to address your email:
*Send to Columbia’s deputy warden at Kalen.Ruck@wisconsin.gov
*CC Secretary of the DOC Cathy.Jess@wisconsin.gov
*CC us at iwoc.milwaukee@gmail.com to help us track total amount of emails

If you have any questions about this email blast you can contact someone at the iwoc email, as well as forward any responses if you receive them. If you are interested in more information on the situation at Columbia and resistance they’ve already done, you can read statements by people inside at here.

How to word your email:
Here is a suggested sample script that you can copy and paste into your message. Feel free to add
personal statements to this, as it makes the impact of the email stronger, including ending by signing your name if you wish.

Subject line: Kalen Ruck: Concern with regulations at Columbia Correctional Institution
To: Kalen Ruck, Deputy Warden at Columbia Correctional Institution

I am deeply concerned about a number of regulations and policies in effect at Columbia Correctional Institution.

Recent changes have made an already difficult and charged environment worse. One prisoner at Columbia described the impact of existing regulations as follows: “They keep changing them all the time and we either don’t know them or the COs don’t know them and implement their own and then write you up for it.” Another said on the policies: “They are exceedingly dangerous and cause prisoners to be driven insane and put everyone at risk.”

I am concerned with these specific policies:
(8.2)(E) Conduct reports for minor infractions.
(26)(D) Psychological evaluations are conducted only at the request of DOC staff.
(25.6)(C)(2) Several months wait for routine dental appointments or teeth cleanings.
(9.1)(C) Braids are not permitted on trips.
(43.3) Inmates are not allowed to have in their possession any written/printed material that
details fantasy/role playing games and activities.
(43.1) Prohibition of petitions by prisoners
(10.5)(B) Property confiscated as contraband if stored in vacant bunks.
(21.1)(B) Institution does not provide writing paper.

These policies seem unnecessary, and work against the stated goals of Columbia to “provide assistance to individuals under our supervision to enhance their successful reintegration within the Community.”

I have also heard reports of enforcement of rules not based on prison policies, including restrictions on cafeteria seating and guards rather than medical staff dispensing medication. (which goes against sections 12 and 25.5 respectively of Columbia’s code)

As you can see there are a lot of reasons for concern. I hope you can make needed changes and improve the situation at Columbia.