Numerous articles have been written about the humorous epitaphs found on gravestones in cemeteries around the country. One of my all-time favorites is: I told you I was sick!
That’s the way it has been with this troubling issue of abuse of mentally ill inmates at Michigan’s prison for women in Ypsilanti.
HUMANITY FOR PRISONERS has been aware of it for months. We have media people who read our dispatches, watch our blog and receive our newsletter. Yet, no one saw the news value of this outrage.
As early as May of this year we started dispatching troubling reports on our daily email network. We were getting these reports directly from inmates who had witnessed the abuse. Reporters wouldn’t bite.
For the month of June we dedicated the front page of our newsletter to these abuses, and encouraged our supporters to spread the word. Nobody in the media picked up on it.
On July 29, armed with ammunition provided by HFP, the ACLU sent a scathing 5-page letter to the director of the Michigan Department of Corrections and the prison warden. HFP immediately issued a news release to that effect. No news in our papers or on the TV.
Finally, Kyle Feldscher of the Ann Arbor News, obtained a copy of the ACLU letter (more than a month after it was written), and the story made front page news yesterday. Screamed the headline: WATER DEPRIVATION, HOG-TYING OF MENTALLY ILL INMATE, AMONG COMPLAINTS AT PRISON NEAR ANN ARBOR.
Yep, we’ve been telling you the system is sick, boys and girls in the media. This is a news story. A big one. Finally someone listened.
Exposure of these alleged atrocities could very well make a huge impact.
We’re praying for positive results.
We’re praying for the victims of this abuse, also.