The King County Council is planning on rehabilitating the Juvenile Hall in Seattle; the tax levy required to finance this will go up for a vote late this summer. Members of Black Orchid Collective have been collaborating with friends and activists from a variety of political tendencies and communities to organize a campaign opposing this jail expansion project. Instead of spending $200 Million in tax money to lock up youth, we think the youth should go free and that working class communities should use these resources to develop our own ways to more effectively support youth struggling with addiction, mental health issues, etc.
We need to abolish prisons. They do not keep our communities safe, they just perpetuate cycles of violence and addiction. They divide and conquer the working class by marking whole section of workers as ex-cons, legalizing discrimination in housing, jobs, etc, creating a permanent undercaste separated from the rest of the working class. This makes it harder to organize against bosses and landlords because when you speak up they can say “i’ll call your probation officer.” This pushes people back into occupations like selling drugs and prostitution or keeps folks stuck in abusive low-wage service industry jobs. Prisons reproduce institutionalized white supremacy, patriarchy, and heterosexism as the flyer below argues. Immigration detention centers do the same – they regulate the workforce through disappearing, detaining, segregating, and deporting members of our communities, keeping the working class divided so that we can’t rise up against the capitalist system that is destroying all of our lives.
We welcome everyone to join us for a mass community meeting on Thurs, May 24th at 6 PM, at Washington Hall, 153 14th Avenue Seattle 98122. Come share your experiences with the criminal injustice system, the prison industrial complex… let’s discuss how to stop this juvie expansion, and let’s discuss how to build a new society without prisons. Details are on the flyer below, and the facebook page is here.
We are passing out this flyer on Saturdays at 11 AM in Seattle’s South End; the flyer was produced by the broad coalition of people involved in this campaign and was also distributed on May Day. Please email us or hit us up on facebook (just look for “Black Orchid”) if you want to join us in these efforts. BOC is working on our own flyer too, which we’ll post shortly.