Wednesday, August 12, 2015

14 Years Old, Unarmed - Shot 7 Times, Trenton NJ

The so called journalist takes seriously the cops claim to have found a gun under some care - 12 HOURS LATER!

The way the 12 hour later weapon should have been reported: - cops "Denied having planted a weapon they claimed to have found almost half a day after the incident."

Tweet to journalist 
 ask him why he took the story seriously of the supposed found gun!

 Please contact me to add your comments and any organzing plans around this to this article.


32m32 minutes ago

Community meeting at Shiloh Baptist Church tomorrow at 6pm (8/13) for

1h1 hour ago
Why did police abandon the ironical report that the teen was shooting at them to now simply he was "reaching ...

Do you believe it for a second? NOT FOR ONE! We ain't buying the story OF THE 12 HOUR GUN!

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Our 2nd Year - Open Letter

Now into our 2nd year, Decarcerate the Garden State has engaged an aggressive struggle to unify affected communities throughout the state of NJ to demand robust decarceration (release) from NJ state corrections facilities.  We have brought together various organizations and constituencies around our events and demands - - and in the next year we hope to escalate the fight to a level that puts Decarceration on the NJ statewide agenda to be addressed as a crisis and among the most pressing issues in the state.  That can only be accomplished by further developing a synergy with existing groups across the state as well as those communities that exist under harsh repression of racially targeted mass incarceration.
In the past year we have held meetings and events in Newark, Plainfield, Bridgeton and Camden and  at Rowan University.  We have continued to promote our demand for the introduction and passage of the NJ Decarceration Act (  ) bringing about sweeping reductions in NJ’s state prison populations and we have joined and supported efforts to curb police brutality and killing by police with impunity.  We have also received attention in the media for petitioning against the NJ State Police deployment to Baltimore to suppress resistance there to another killing by police of an unarmed Black man.
                 While there are many political and social sectors now calling for one kind of “prison reform” or another, given the racist and classist way that this state and nation determines who gets arrested, who gets prosecuted, who gets sentenced and for how long, it is of utmost importance that communities targeted by mass incarceration (like Newark, Camden, Jersey City, etc.) take the lead in structuring the kind of decarceration legislation that is initiated and fought for.  We can not leave it to the political parties and the companies and professional organizations that profit from mass incarceration to determine what kind of “reform” occurs.  Let the most directly affected communities set the agenda – that is the goal of Decarcerate the Garden State – to make sure changes truly benefit the families and communities targeted.
The following is a high level summary of the plan of action of Committee to Decarcerate the Garden State:
The NJ Decarceration Act (to sign:  ) we are pressing for would define a method to reduce NJ prison population by 50% over the next 4 years through sentence commutation nnd reduction.  We also call for local administration efforts at the city level to change the priorities of local policing from revenue raising, the enforcement of minimalist nuisance and “quality of life” ordinances and low level drug laws, especially pot laws.  This kind of enforcement targets the impoverished and often starts the cycle that leads to incarceration for thousands of NJ residents.  Local official can also pass resolutions urging the state legislative bodies to pass the NJ Decarceration Act and other decarcerating legislation.  You can also print the petition from this link and and gather signatures face to face the old fashioned way, with a clipboard and pen:
Tour de Decarcerate Panel Discussions
We have held panel discussions in several cities around the state of NJ.  Our format usually provides a keynote speaker that gives a historic overview and current assessment of the mass incarceration on a national scale.  Then we usually have one or more speakers to address the issue of mass incarceration as it affects the local communities and also provide information on some of the local related community battles that are occurring.  The finishing speaker is usually a member of Decarcerate the Garden State who provides a call to action on the issue and provides the plan of attack of our organization.  We continue to seek out new venues and new local committees, organizations or individuals that are interested in bringing our presentation into their communities or on college campuses.  We usually hold one or more meetings in the community ahead of the event to make sure local concerns are addressed in the event.  IF you are interested in exploring holding such an event in your locale, please call 908-881-5275 or write .
NJ Decarcerator
Over the last year we distributed thousands of copies of the first issue of The NJ Decarcerator around the state of NJ.  Now we have the second issue hitting the streets.  Now issue 2 is about hit the streets.  We are printing 1000s .  This issue is more focused on outreach directly to the incarcerated and their families who are the most important part of this fight.  We also are going to make sure the paper gets out to all of the major cities around the state (and into the prisons) and to attempt to create a dialogue with the readership around the articles and proposals presented herein.  To help distribute the paper and coordinate its success, please call 908-881-5275 or write .
Justice Committee
                In addition to supporting the call for decarceration, we also participate in championing the call for justice in cases of political prisoners, those who have been falsely convicted, over charged, over sentenced, victimized by atrocity and nonetheless punished by the criminal system or abused and tortured in correctional facilities.  Please approach us with requests to support.  We will work with families as well as other organizations to demand justice.  At this point we can call attention to these issues, help educate the community and support actions around these cases.  As the community develops a stronger sense of unity around these issues, we can work with others toward effective strategies that can actually bring about results.
Personal and Group Study
We continue to encourage personal and group study of the issue of mass incarceration and the struggle to end it at its roots.  There are tremendous resources for free on the internet.  For starters, we recommend review of the following:
Johanna Fernandez from our first major event July 2014 on the steps of City Hall:

Of course Michelle Alexander’s: New Jim Crow book which is readily available from booksellers and the PDF download can be found via internet search.  There are numerous sites including our own blog site that deliver regular updates on the many injustices of mass incarceration – articles can be read and discussed by you and your colleagues.
The Blog Site
                We are publishing our work, articles for NJ Decarcerator, opinions of members, etc. on our blog site, easy link: .  We want YOU as one of our blog journalists.  We hope to expand into a multi-faceted site with news on all of the system challenging struggles from various perspectives representing the on the ground struggles not only on Decarceration but police brutality, economic issues of the fight for $15, the struggles around cannabis legalization and medical cannabis access and other related efforts.  Contact us now to become an author – either on a guest or regular basis: 908-881-5275 / .          
Facebook Group
                Most of our decisions, meeting minutes and some on-line discussion are documented on our Facebook group:

 Building Solidarity with and Among the Incarcerated and Families
In our second year, we are hoping to make a higher priority, organizing families and joining directly with the incarcerated in the struggle to end mass incarceration in the state of NJ.  We hope to help facilitate two way communications between those on the outside who are demanding and struggling to end mass incarceration and those on the inside and their families bearing the brunt of these repressive policies.  The message we want to send to the families and across the walls to those on the inside is a message of hope – that there are those on the outside fighting for change – also an appeal to help in the effort by helping to spread the word about the fight to each other and to family members.  The message we want to help carry OUT from behind the walls would be about what kind of support is needed, what kind of oppression is occurring inside, whether we can assist in any way efforts to organize the Decarceration fight on the inside.  Hopefully through our various media resources we can give a voice to those on the inside and draw back the curtain to reveal the truth about the horrors in NJ’s carceral facilities.             
                Please be encouraged to contact us at 973-223-2114 or 908-881-5275 with any questions or ideas you have and we hope that you and / or a representative of your organization can join this historic fight to DECARCERATE THE GARDEN STATE!
Sincerely, Decarcerate the Garden State

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Prison Detention Divestment Call to Action

This invitation was received today by Decarcerate the Garden State - please forward widely:

Hello Bob,
My name is Erica Gbur,  I'm an AFSC intern working with Alix Nguefack,  and I am emailing you on behalf of the AFSC and Enlace to invite you and  Decarcerate the Garden State to join our Prison Divestment Campaign. Our campaign is centered around researching the effects that private prisons and detention centers have had on our communities, and encouraging other organizations, schools, and businesses to divest from corporations that run these facilities. We are also inviting you to come join our #End the Quota Rally at Elizabeth Detention Center on August 13th, from 11 am to noon. 
There is more information about our campaign, as well as information on how to sign up, in the attached document. And if you have any more questions you can email Daniel Carrillo at or Alix Nguefack at . And we will be calling next week about a NY strategy session in September, and to answer any questions. We look forward to working with you, deadline to sign on is August 25th.
Erica Gbur

New Jersey Prison Divestment Campaign

Vision/ Mission
We are a diverse set of students, immigrant and criminal justice grassroots, advocacy and faith based organizations in New Jersey coming together under the arc of Prison Divestment to connect Black Lives Matters, Immigrant Rights, and Prison Human Rights Movements. We strive to impact the lives of New Jersey Black, Brown, and indigenous communities.

Our campaigns will:
  • Involve Students to highlight the School to Prison Pipeline.
  • Address anti-Blackness in the immigrant rights movement, while also connecting Police Brutality and Polimigra fights.
  • Look at the impact of using the prisons, detention, county jails and halfway houses to generate profit for corporations and revenue for local governments, including per diem rates per prisoner from federal contracts, exorbitant phone rates, and inflated pricing for commissary items, on the families and children in New Jersey’s communities.
  • Research where our tax dollars are going and what undue financial or political influences are responsible for the increase in prison populations of black and brown people including campaign contributions from prisons, detention, county jails and halfway houses
  • Demand greater transparency for prisons, detention, county jails and halfway houses by strengthening New Jersey’s sunshine and pay to play laws.
  • Demand the State of New Jersey divest from prisons, detention, county jails and halfway houses and reinvest those resources in the community, for example, education and healthcare.

Proposed Campaign Focus
The New Jersey Prison Divestment Campaign will focus on three areas:
  1. Developing a campaign jointly targeting prisons, detention, county jails and halfway houses
  2. Developing and supporting university prison divestment campaigns, beginning with Rutgers
  3. Utilize testimony from prisoners and their families and friends to raise awareness about how public dollars are used by corporations to profit from mass incarceration and how public penal facilities raise revenue from incarcerated people.

How to get involved
  1. Sign On to the 1 pager on the campaign
  2. Attend the September Strategy and Action Planning Wednesday September 9th from 10am- 1pm at AFSC Newark Office (89 Market Street, 6th Floor Newark, NJ 07102)
a.    At this session we will discuss the proposed campaign focus and consider any other possible components so that we can develop an action plan.

Sign on to the Campaign



Monday, August 3, 2015

To Family, Loved Ones, Friends . . . of the Incarcerated

You and your dear ones on the inside of the American gulag prison system are the most important constituency to our organization – Decarcerate the Garden State.  Our organization was launched in 2014 with varying measures of success but we can not begin to dismantle the prison apparatus in the state of NJ or across the USA without full involvement of the families and the incarcerated in this fight.

You and your loved ones on the inside are on the FRONT LINES of this fight.  If we are unsuccessful – it is you and your families that suffer.  If we get any degree of success you are the ones that could benefit.  You are the ones that are fully aware of the exact toll mass incarceration takes – on the individual incarcerated – on the immediate family – on their beloved ones .   We can not go any where on this issue effectively without your involvement.  You have the most to gain from any possible success and the most to lose if we are ineffective in winning any of our demands for Decarceration and for an end to abuses inside the carceral apparatus of NJ.  Therefore our organization needs your active membership and involvement in order to even begin to approach any aspect of success.

What can incarcerated and their families do to facilitate and lead the movement to Decarcerate the Garden State.

1.       Communications.  The incarcerated in NJ and throughout the USA live under the most extremely repressive conditions imaginable.   Every aspect of life is totally scrutinized and treatment and abuse of incarcerated is totally arbitrary.  There are numerous ways authorities can pressure incarcerated – and direct violence and neglect are rampant.   That said, there is communications that occurs between the incarcerated.   When we were organizing an event in Bridgeton NJ, we sent some random letters into the facility to incarcerated and at least one loved one was contacted from inside the facility and she ended up attending the event.  She stated that “they know about it” of the event – indicating that the word had traveled within the facility.  This was a random experimental jab to see if information can penetrate NJ’s facilities.  It can!  Imagine a well orchestrated sustained effort?   Communication with the incarcerated and through them to their families is possibly the best way to spread the word to the most affected constituency of mass incarceration.  It takes some level of coordination but it could be key to our success in winning Decarceration goals in NJ.

2.       Information.  Part of the methods and goals of Decarcerate the Garden State is to shed light upon and expose the abuses, neglect, corruption, institutional violence, racism, physical, mental and emotional health depriving, live shortening of mass incarceration including exposing specific examples from within the dungeons of NJ and throughout the US.  In order to accomplish as much we need for the incarcerated to tell the stories – through their own words and through communications to us and through their families.  We want to throw open the full  communication resources of our organization, including our paper, our blog site, website and social networking pages to the incarcerated.   Let the truth be told.   We need to be in direct communication with the incarcerated and their families – to get the word out about the bad food, the abusive set ups, the medical neglect, the arbitrary mind games, the systemic exposure to violence, the arbitrary deployment of solitary and other severe punitive measures that is day-to-day in the facilities of NJ and throughout the country.  Please use the means at your disposal to get information to us – either directly or through a conduit ( a family, a friend, a trusted go between).

We would like our blog site to regularly feature the writings of incarcerated and their families.   We want to be able to educate the masses of NJ about the atrocity of mass incarceration in NJ and at the same time give the incarcerated and their families a voice.  You are denied the vote and the system wants to deny you a voice – to fight the system – we want to give amplification to the struggles for survival against severe oppression of the incarcerated.

3.       Strategy.  Who best to determine the way forward for the Decarceration movement, the tactics, the goals, the methods of struggle, the organizing strategy, than those most directly affected – those with the most to gain or lose upon the success or failure of the fight – the incarcerated and their families.  We need you to help us figure out the best strategy, what are the demands, what are the abuses that need to end inside the system, what are the sentencing abuses that occurred, the prosecutorial and police misconduct that put people in prison unjustly, what are the laws that resulted in placing people in prison that do not belong behind bars, who are those that should be eligible for relief, pardons, sentence reductions, assistance.  Who are the people who are being hurt inside the system by neglect, health and medical neglect, arbitrary denial of privileges, locked in solitary, subjected to physical abuse and systemic violence.  We need the incarcerated, their families and loved ones at the strategy table to determine the plan of action to Decarcerate the Garden State.

4.       Organization.  There is a natural kinship between families of the incarcerated in their shared plight.  The incarcerated themselves, given their forced proximity, while thoroughly repressed by the incarcerating authorities, surrounded by weaponry, surveillance and control technology, still have opportunity to coalesce and whisper to each other and unify.  While incarceration authorities deal harshly with the political minded in the facilities, the incarcerated can often perservere and develop structures.  If the incarcerated align their structures toward the goals of ending mass incarceration and determine a way to work inside and coordinate through their families and other supporters of Decarceration on the outside – Inside – Outside convergence and unity can begin to force the systemic changes needed to dismantle mass incarceration.

We invite you to contact us: .  Tell us what is going on with your loved one / family member / friend on the inside.  Was s/he falsely convicted?  Over sentenced?  Was there prosecutorial misconduct?  Are they incarcerated based on trumped up charges over a ridiculous infraction?   Are they being mistreated and abused?  How?  What kind of support is needed from the outside?  Are they being subjected to solitary?  Are “privileges” being denied / revoked arbitrarily?  Have they been subjected to medical or other neglect?  Have they been subjected to physical or any other forms of violence either by incarcerating authorities or by other incarcerated?
Do you want to speak / write openly on these topics?  Does your loved one on the inside want to write about these issues publicly?  Perhaps you want to share information on these issues but do not want to do so publicly – that can also be arranged.  Do you want to put your loved one directly in connection with us?   Do you want us  to write directly to them?
Let’s make these connections and build these links between the families and the Decarceration the Garden State movement and between our organization and those who are incarcerated.   The potential for this kind of unity is unlimited.

Contact us now: .

Related topics:

Poking A Hole in the Prison Wall – Writing to the Incarcerated in NJ

Decarcerate the Garden State to Challenge Prison Policies Barring Effective Communication to Visitors

Interviewing Free Alabama Movement (FAM)

Communicating Through the Walls