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Posts Tagged ‘Herman Bell’

Illustrated Guide Version 12.2 Uploaded!

We’ve finished the latest version of the NYC ABCIllustrated Guide to Political Prisoners and Prisoners of War” and it’s available for viewing (and download) by clicking on the tab at the top of this page. This update includes updated mini-bios, photos, and address changes for several prisoners.

Action Alert Against Gov Cuomo’s Proposed NYS Visitation Restrictions

cuomovisitationWe have been made aware of an awful piece of the Governor’s budget proposal that that would affect thousands of folks in New York State (NYS) prisons, including all of the political prisoners in New York who we list in our guide. This call to action has been circulating and we hope that you will take part and pass it along as well:

Governor Cuomo has just proposed to limit visiting at New York State maximum security prisons to three days a week instead of the current seven. If passed, this measure will be awful for David Gilbert, Herman Bell, Seth Hayes, Jalil Muntaqim and thousands of other maximum security prisoners.

This proposal will seriously escalate suffering and family disruption. Under the current seven-day system, weekend visitors (many are women with young children) often wait two to three hours to see their loved ones. With reduced days, the wait will be longer, the visitor rooms more crowded, the visiting days and hours even more limited. This will be terrible for everyone and impossible for many.

Please email and write the people below and remind them how important visiting is and how this proposal is wrong on all levels.
 
Governor Cuomo
Call (weekdays) –> 518.474.8390
Write
The Honorable Andrew M. Cuomo 
Governor of New York State 
NYS State Capitol Building 
Albany, New York 12224
 
Email these people:
1) Marta Nelson, marta.nelson@exec.ny.gov – Executive Director of the Governor’s Council on Community Re-Entry and Reintegration
2) Acting DOCCS Commissioner Annucci, anthony.annucci@doccs.ny.gov
3) Senator Gallivan, gallivan@nysenate.gov – Senate Chair of Corrections Committee
4) Assemblymember Weprin, WeprinD@nyassembly.gov – Assembly Chair of Corrections Committee
5) Senator Avella, Avella@nysenate.gov – Senate Chair of Children & Families Committee
6) Assemblymember Jaffee, JaffeeE@nyassembly.gov – Chair Assembly Committee on Children & Families

BK/NY – Tuesday, January 3rd – Letter-Writing Dinner For New York State Political Prisoners

WHAT: Political Prisoner Letter-Writing Dinner
WHEN: 7pm sharp, Tuesday, January 3rd, 2017
WHERE: The Base1302 Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn, New York 11221 (directions below)

NOTE: The Base is on the ground floor, is wheelchair accessible, and has a gender neutral toilet.
COST: Free
nys-2017Ah yes, 2017. Doesn’t the new year imbue such feelings of revitalization and a renewed sense of optimism? Yeah, right. We know better than that. Not only does 2017 mean looking down the barrel of an orange fascist presidency but it marks another calendar year that comrades who have fought for the revolution are stuck behind bars. This week NYC ABC will be writing to those closest to us, those held captive in New York State prisons: Jalil Muntaqim, Robert Seth Hayes, Herman Bell, David Gilbert, and Reverend Joy Powell.

Jalil Muntaqim and Robert Seth Hayes, both former Black Panthers, have been frequenting prison support news wires for the past few months; unfortunately for nothing positive.  Jalil has been in the SHU (Special Housing Unit) since December 6th as a result of him teaching a Black history course. Although this course was approved by the prison administration, they have decided they didn’t like the accuracy of what he was teaching and threw him in the SHU as an ongoing effort to censor him. To read his explanation of the situation, read here.

Robert Seth Hayes continues to experience life threatening medical problems with (unsurprisingly) no help from the state. He was told on October 12th that he needs an insulin pump to help monitor his diabetes but the prison has still failed to deliver this life saving mechanism to him. Read more information and how you can support him fight for the medical care he requires here.

Herman Bell is also a former Black Panther who has been locked up for four decades. Like Jalil and Seth, he was yet again denied parole in 2016. Each time, the board – always made of up former law enforcement personnel and former prosecutors — reviews his very impressive record, the Bachelor’s and Master’s college degrees he has attained since being locked up, his job offers, his numerous letters of support from family, friends, and community members from many walks of life. They have before them evidence of all the ways Herman has helped so many people throughout the course of his confinement and is still leading a positive and progressive life despite being locked up now over four decades. See the petition for his latest parole request and hear from Herman his thoughts on his latest parole board appearance here.

David Gilbert was moved in 2016 to Wende Correctional Facility, luckily closer to some close comrades and unfortunately farther from others. David is a long time anti-racist and anti-imperialist who is serving a life sentence for his involvement as a white comrade to the Black Liberation Army during an attempted expropriation, better known as the Brinks Robbery. He has continued the struggle while held captive. For more information, see here.

Reverend Joy Powell was warned by the Rochester Police department that she was a target because of her speaking out against corruption.  On many occasions, Rev. Joy held rallies and spoke out against the police brutality and “police justifications” in Rochester, New York. As a result, she was accused and convicted of 1st Degree Burglary and Assault. Rev. Joy has filed multiple grievances for sexual assault and religious discrimination among other things, as well as been repeatedly denied medical attention for her diabetes and asthma. For more information on how you can help support, read here.

We hope you’ll join us Tuesday to send these lifetime revolutionaries some love and solidarity. If for some reason you have something more “important” to do, then you can write to them from the comfort of your home office:

Jalil Muntaqim* (Anthony Jalil Bottom) #77-A-4283
Attica Correctional Facility
Post Office Box 149
Attica, New York 14011-0149
*Address the envelope to Anthony Bottom and the letter to Jalil.

Robert Seth Hayes #74-A-2280
Sullivan Correctional Facility
Post Office Box 116
Fallsburg, New York 12733-0116

Herman Bell #79-C-0262
Great Meadow Correctional Facility
11739 State Route 22
Post Office Box 51
Comstock, New York 12821-0051

David Gilbert #83-A-6158
Wende Correctional Facility
3040 Wende Road
Alden, New York 14004

Reverend Joy Powell 07G0632
Bedford Hills Correctional Facility
Post Office Box 1000
Bedford Hills, New York 10507-2499
Read more…

BK/NY – Sunday, September 4th – Running Down the Walls 2016!

web poster 2016WHAT: Running Down the Walls – 5k Run/Walk/Jog/Bike
WHEN: 2:00-7:00pm, Sunday, September 4th
WHERE: Prospect Park– Lincoln Road/East Lake Drive, east of the Terrace Bridge (see the below map for exact location)
COST: $10 registration (includes food and drinks afterwards)

Every year, prisoners and supporters of political prisoners organize solidarity events with Running Down the Walls. In the last few years, we’ve had runs in Albuquerque (NM), Arcata (CA), Ashland (OR), Bellefonte (PA), Boston (MA), Denver (CO), Elmore (AL), Inez (KY), Los Angeles (CA), Marion (IL), New York (NY), USP Navosta (TX), Pelican Bay (CA), Phoenix (AZ), Tucson (AZ), and Toronto, Ontario. This year we hope to expand the amount of runs in prisons and other cities, as well as increase the amount of funds raised for community projects. NYC ABC‘s goal with this year’s run is $3,000. You can donate online by going to gumroad.com/nycabc

This year’s run will take place on Sunday, September 4th at 2:00pm in solidarity and conjunction with runs that will take place in cities and prison yards across the country at the same time.

REGISTER AS, OR SPONSOR, A PARTICIPANT

To raise our goal of $3,000, we need your support.

* Promote – print and distribute this poster and/or this flyer to friends and local businesses, your doctor’s office, laundromat, food co-op, wealthy benefactor, et cetera.

* Run/walk/bike/roll in the 5k – We need participants who can run/walk/bike/roll the 5k and are able to collect financial pledges to offer as donations to the run. Download the brochure, complete with registration and sponsor form right here.

* Volunteer for the run – We need folks who are willing to staff a registration/literature table, hand out water, bike the route as street medics, and help chalk the route beforehand.

* Donate online at gumroad.com/nycabc

* Donate to the run/sponsor a participant – If you are not able to attend, but want to support this fundraising effort, please mail donations to:
NYC ABC
Post Office Box 110034
Brooklyn, New York 11211

Your donation of $10 or more entitles you to the celebratory picnic after the event.

Each year, we split proceeds between the Anarchist Black Cross Federation’s Warchest Program and a local organization. This year’s partner group will be the Queer Detainee Empowerment Project (QDEP).

The Warchest Program:
The Anarchist Black Cross Federation (ABCF) has initiated a program designed to send monthly checks to those Political Prisoners and Prisoners of War who have been receiving insufficient, little, or no financial support during their imprisonment. The Warchest program was initiated in November 1994. Its purpose is to collect monthly funds from groups and individual supporters, and send that money to Political Prisoners and Prisoners of War (PP/POW) via monthly checks. Over the last two decades, the ABCF warchest has dispensed over $75,000 to political prisoners in the United States. Currently, there are ten imprisoned comrades who receive a monthly stipend as part of the program; they are:
Joseph Bowen
Xinachtli (FKA Alvaro Luna Hernandez)
Herman Bell
Robert Seth Hayes
Maliki Shakur Latine
Ruchell Magee
Sundiata Acoli
Hanif Bey
Oso Blanco

For more information, visit: abcf.net/warchest-program

Queer Detainee Empowerment Project (QDEP):
The Queer Detainee Empowerment Project (QDEP) is a collective Alternative to Detention (ATD), detention center visitation, direct service, and community organizing project that works with Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Queer, Two Spirit, Trans, Gender Non- Conforming, and HIV+ detainees and their families currently in detention centers, those that are recently released from detention centers, and undocumented folks in New York City. For more information, visit qdep.org

We’ll be starting here:


Directions:
From the Q train, get off at the Prospect Park stop. Walk to Lincoln Road and turn right into the park. We’ll be about 700 feet away.

The event will be one lap around what is known as the Main Loop, and will total five kilometers. For the curious, here’s what it looks like:

Main Loop

Of course, if you have any questions, e-mail us at nycabc at riseup dot net

BK/NY – Tuesday, March 29th – Letter Writing Dinner for Seth Hayes and Jalil Muntaqim

WHAT: Political Prisoner Letter-Writing Dinner
WHEN: 7pm sharp, Tuesday, March 29th, 2016
WHERE: The Base1302 Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn, New York 11221 (directions below)

NOTE: The Base is on the ground floor, is wheelchair accessible, and has a gender neutral toilet.
COST: Free

How shocked can we really be that the New York State legal system will recommend house arrest for a few months and probation to a cop who murdered Akai Gurley for simply living in the projects while in the same week denying Herman Bell freedom once again by refusing him parole?  The State has yet to shy away from their blatant hypocrisies.  It is an unneeded reminder of why they have long outstayed their welcome.

Just because the parole system has continued its hubris by effectively re-sentencing our freedom fighting comrades year after year, it does not mean we should cease exhausting every possible option to bring them home to their families and community. Robert “Seth” Hayes and Jalil Muntaquim are both up for parole in the coming months.  The parole process takes a lot of effort on both sides of the walls and Seth and Jalil can use all the support they can get.

jalilJalil Muntaqim is a former Black Panther and Black Liberation Army member who, in 1971, was arrested in California and ultimately convicted for the killing of two New York City cops. In 1974, Muntaqim was convicted and received a prison term of twenty-five years to life.  Jalil is a writer, a poet, a scholar, and an educator.  He has taken the same persistence and dedication he had on the outside engaging in the Black Liberation struggle to the inside, dedicating his time there to improving the lives of those who have found themselves behind the same bars.
To find out more about Jalil’s parole campaign: http://www.freejalil.com/2016parole.html

 

seth

Seth Hayes joined the Black Panthers following the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.  He was drawn to the struggle of Black Liberation that was swelling at the time and put his body to work in the Panther’s medical clinics and free breakfast programs.  When the FBI started infiltrating and cracking down on the Party and its supporters, Seth, like many others, decided to take the struggle underground and joined the Black Liberation Army. In 1973, following a shootout with police, Seth was arrested and convicted of the murder of a New York City police officer.  Since his incarceration, Seth has continued the struggle by doing what he can to improve the lives of others on the inside by mentoring and educating them.  Seth also has faced several life threatening health problems recently due to the medical neglect he faces while in the State’s custody.
For more about Seth’s parole campaign: http://www.jerichony.org/sethparole2016.html
Fundraiser for Seth’s fight for life and freedom: https://fundrazr.com/campaigns/810a58

If are unable to join us on Tuesday, you can still write to Seth and Jalil:

Robert Seth Hayes #74-A-2280
Sullivan Correctional Facility
Post Office Box 116
Fallsburg, New York 12733-0116
Jalil Muntaqim* #77-A-4283
Attica Correctional Facility
Post Office Box 149
Attica, New York 14011-0149
*Address envelope to Anthony Bottom.

The deal, as always, is that you come bringing only yourself (and your friends and comrades), and we provide you with a delicious vegan meal, information about the prisoners as well as all of the letter-writing materials and prisoner-letter-writing info you could ever want to use in one evening. In return, you write a thoughtful letter to a political prisoner or prisoner of war of your choosing or, better yet, keep up a long-term correspondence. We’ll also provide some brief updates and pass around birthday cards for the PP/POWs whose birthdays fall in the next two weeks thanks to the PP/POW Birthday Calendar.

Read more…

BK/NY – Tuesday, January 19th – Letter Writing Dinner for Herman Bell

WHAT: Political Prisoner Letter-Writing Dinner
WHEN: 7pm sharp, Tuesday, January 19th, 2016
WHERE: The Base1302 Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn, New York 11221 (directions below)

NOTE: The Base is on the ground floor, is wheelchair accessible, and has a gender neutral toilet.
COST: Free

1-KJB-Dad-Si-KR-SaAs the campaign to parole Herman Bell is nearing its climax in February, now is as good a time as ever to send some love and well wishes Herman’s way before he goes to the board. If you are new to our website and letter writing events and may not know much about Herman, he is a mentor, a father, a scholar, a coach, and a former Black Panther who was very active in the movement for Black Liberation. He has been in prison for 42 years for the murder of a NYC cop. He has been denied parole 6 times despite his productive time behind bars that has resulted in him receiving two Bachelors of Science degrees and a Masters degree, becoming known throughout the New York state prison system as a mentor, a football coach, and an educator.

In addition to writing Herman on Tuesday in the company of comrades and a home cooked vegan meal, we also urge folks to see what else they can do to support Herman during his parole push on this website: http://www.freehermanbell.org/ParoleEfforts.html

If for some reason you can’t make it on Tuesday, you can write to Herman at:

Herman Bell #79-C-0262
Great Meadow Correctional Facility
11739 State Route 22
Post Office Box 51
Comstock, New York 12821-0051

Read more…

Categories: What We Do Tags: , ,

Sign This Petition To Support Parole For Herman Bell

We don’t typically promote online petitions, but this one has the potential to have influence in supporting parole for our comrade Herman Bell. The full text of the petition is below. Please sign and share with others http://www.thepetitionsite.com/677/086/596/in-support-of-parole-for-herman-bell-79c0262

To Chairwoman, Board of Parole, New York State, Tina M. Stanford

Grant parole to New York State prisoner Herman Bell

We are asking that Herman Bell be granted release on parole at his February 2016 hearing

Herman Bell has been in state custody since 1979 and has been denied release on parole 6 times since he first became eligible in 2004.

Every time Herman has been denied, it has been for the same reason-that releasing him would undermine the law and deprecate the seriousness of the crime. Herman has taken responsibility and expressed regret for the shooting of the police officer and has served 4 decades in prison for this offense. He is by all accounts, a much different person than he was in 1971 and further incarceration serves no purpose other than vengeance. We believe Herman has done everything he can to make amends for his crime and we ask that he be granted parole at his 7th parole hearing in 2016.

While incarcerated, Herman has been a model prisoner and a positive influence on those around him. He has been a mentor and father-figure to many young men in prison, helping them take advantage of every academic and vocational program they can to prepare for release and reintegration into society. In addition to earning a dual Bachelor of Science degree in psychology and sociology, and a Masters degree in sociology, Herman has coached football and basketball in order to have a positive influence on the many young men he has met during his 4 decades in prison. With Herman’s help, the Victory Gardens project was established in 1995 with two farmers in Maine. The project brought together people from diverse lifestyles and remote locations to plant, grow, tend, harvest, and then distribute the food free to our communities. This life-giving project enjoyed eight successful seasons distributing food in Maine, Boston, New Jersey, Brooklyn, Harlem, and the Bronx.

Herman’s continued denials at the parole board are sadly, not a rarity but the norm. The number of incarcerated people ages 50+ in New York has increased 81% from 2000 to 2013, even as the total number of people locked up has fallen by 23% during the same period. Today, 17% of incarcerated men and 15% of incarcerated women in the New York prison system are over 50 years of age- roughly 9,000 people. Herman is 67 years old.

This is an unnecessary crisis. Many of these elders should be released. New York routinely denies parole to elders behind bars, even though they pose no risk to public safety and are fully prepared to successfully re-enter and contribute to society. The recidivism rate of people who have served long sentences for serious felonies is 1.3%—lower than any other category of those released. Many, like Herman, have records of positive achievement in prison and are praised by prison officials as peacemakers and role models.