To treat Milwaukee’s trauma, stop traumatizing people: Close Secure Detention Facility

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, July 13, 2018

By Barbara J. Miner

In a powerful piece in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that highlights the work of #CLOSEmsdf Leaders, Barbara J. Miner writes that MSDF “is a brutal, merciless solution to a problem that, under more enlightened policies wouldn’t exist.”

Groundbreaking leadership training

Milwaukee Renaissance, May 3, 2018

By Mark Rice

JustLeadershipUSA is a national, criminal justice reform, nonprofit organization that aims to cut the United States correctional population in half by 2030 by empowering those most impacted by mass incarceration to drive policy reform. JustLeadershipUSA held its groundbreaking Emerging Leaders training at Milwaukee Area Technical College in April 2018. This is the twelfth Emerging Leaders training that JustLeadershipUSA (JLUSA) has held across the country, and 150 men and women have graduated from the training. The training itself is an abridged version of JLUSA’s Leading with Conviction program, which is an intensive, year-long program, currently in its fourth year, that trains formerly incarcerated men and women to amplify their leadership in criminal justice reform. Read the full story here.

Silence and inaction regarding MSDF must stop

Milwaukee Neighborhood News Service, Oct. 11, 2017

Jabril Faraj’s recent article about Milwaukee Secure Detention Facility (MSDF) revealed important information about a little known human rights crisis in Milwaukee.

Tragically, at a time when Milwaukee and Wisconsin need bold leadership on human rights issues, nearly all public officials in Milwaukee and throughout the state have remained silent about Milwaukee’s high-rise torture chamber. This is not acceptable.

The very existence of MSDF violates Milwaukeeans’ belief in humanity and fairness. Problems facing people incarcerated at this facility include extreme heat, poor ventilation, no access to outdoor recreation or sunlight, being locked down over 20 hours a day, no in-person visits and other abuses. All of this is for people who have typically not even been charged with new crimes. These inhumane conditions and the neglect of staff members played a role in the deaths of several individuals at this institution.

Mark Rice, a Wisconsin statewide EXPO organizer and #CLOSEmsdf Campaign lead organizer, writes that it’s time for public officials to speak out about the need to close the Milwaukee Secure Detention Facility (MSDF).

Read more of Mark’s editorial here.

Stories from the inside shared as advocates call for closing Department of Corrections jail in Milwaukee

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Oct. 11, 2017

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A Mass Story Lab event focused on the campaign to #CLOSEmsdf was held Tuesday, Oct. 10, at Marquette University, Milwaukee. Mass Story Lab is a national organization that uses first-person storytelling to promote human rights. It organized the event with the Wisconsin chapter of Ex-Prisoners Organizing, a group working to reduce mass incarceration and to eliminate discrimination against formerly incarcerated people.

The group of ex-prisoners is leading a campaign to demand the closure of the secure detention facility. The center opened in 2001 with the intent of easing crowding in county jails. It has the capacity for about 1,000 inmates at any given time. Read more. 

Community organizers demand closure of Milwaukee Secure Detention Facility

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Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, June 30, 2017

The criminal justice reform group Ex-Prisoners Organizing is leading a new campaign to shed light on what it deems the uninhabitable conditions of the Milwaukee Secure Detention Facility and to call for reform on how Wisconsin handles the revocation process. Read more.

 

IMG_0072Rice, Brisco: The state’s secure detention facility in Milwaukee needs to be closed

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Opinion, June 29, 2017

The state is spending at least $52 million per year to unnecessarily imprison people at MSDF. It is time to start using the money being wasted on MSDF to build safer, stronger, and healthier communities in Milwaukee.

Instead of incarcerating people for minor infractions, Wisconsin policymakers should ensure that people get the help they need in the community and allow them to keep working and living with their families. Read more.

 

Watchdog report: No new conviction, but sent back to prison

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Jan. 17, 2015

More than half of the nearly 8,000 people sent to Wisconsin’s prisons in 2013 were locked up without a trial — and they weren’t found guilty of new crimes. Read more.

cropped-header1.jpgEXPO Launches Campaign to Close Milwaukee Secure Detention Facility

Urban Milwaukee, June 29, 2017

Hundreds of faith leaders, community advocates, and formerly incarcerated people gathered today at Milwaukee Area Technical College (MATC) and then marched to the Milwaukee Secure Detention Facility (MSDF) to launch a campaign led by EX-Prisoners Organizing (EXPO) to close the prison. Read more.