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Kite Line- April 10, 2020: Free Them Now- Protests and Planning in the Face of COVID-19

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This week, we continue our coverage of the pandemic’s impact on prisoners across the country.  A COVID-19 uprising broke out in Washington state this week.  On April 8, 100 prisoners refused to comply with orders to disperse a protest, and were attacked by so-called “less lethal weapons” like rubber bullets and pepper spray.  They had initiated the protest after half a dozen prisoners and five guards had tested positive for coronavirus.

The next day, dozens of prisoners seized control of their pod in Lansing Correctional in Kansas, protesting lack of medical care.  At least 12 prisoners have tested positive for COVID-19 there.  Prisoners destroyed guard offices and cameras and barricaded doors.  The revolt was put down by guards early this morning. You can see that video HERE.

This week, we share an audio interview from April 3rd, that we received from a prisoner in Stateville, Joseph Dole, who talks about the situation there, and the death of a fellow inmate. You can access the full, unedited audio HERE.

We are still taking calls at our coronavirus hotline, and we have been hearing from inmates all across the country. We will have more of the calls on our website, and on next week’s show- but we encourage you to get the word out to those you know on the inside, so that they can record a message about the impact of COVID-19 on the facilities they are in. That number is (765) 343-6236.

We end this week’s episode with a conversation with Kelsey Kauffman, a long time prisoner advocate, teacher, and researcher. Kelsey and others have written a detailed plan for combating the mass fatalities currently facing those inside. You can see the plan HERE.

Come back to our website later this week for more call-in audio from prisoners from Illinois, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Georgia- and hopefully more.

UPDATE: One more prisoner, an elderly man named Hollis, died at Stateville from the coronavirus, as of 4/10/20 at 6:00 pm EST.