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00:29

Justice NOW! It's Time To Stop The Humanitarian Crisis at Parchman Prison

Photo Description: Five men sleeping on the floor of a cell in Parchman Prison in Mississippi. 

Parchman is Mississippi’s oldest prison. It is plagued with a history of convict leasing, abusive guards, and inhumane conditions. Over the last 40 years, several whistleblowers, including incarcerated people, have sounded the alarm about the harmful conditions -- visible mold taking over the buildings, undrinkable water, and scraps served as meals. And conditions continue to get even worse. Five people in five days were murdered in their cells. 

Parchman is a maximum-security prison that has been under lockdown for over a week. Dozens of pictures and videos have been shared from inside the prison bringing to light the horrific conditions: people being stabbed to death, dead and bloodied bodies filling cells, pipes leaking water and flooding cells, molded walls caving in on themselves, and up to six people sleeping side by side in a cell with nothing more than a sheet to cover their bodies. None of this happened by accident or overnight, this is the reality of our mass incarceration crisis in America. And in spite of all the cries for help, the Mississippi Department of Corrections and Governor Tate Reeves have failed to address the documented inhumane conditions inside the prison and continue to overlook the numerous claims that prison guards gave the assailants access to people’s locked cells. 

This situation is an embarrassment to the State of Mississipi, and it is further proof that the state is incapable of managing its massive prison system. It’s been over 40 years since allegations of abuse, violence and civil rights violations in the prison made national headlines, and little has changed for the men incarcerated there. Parchman prison is a humanitarian crisis. 

No one deserves to live in squalor, or in fear that their lives may be taken in the middle of the night. It is past time for Mississippi’s elected officials to respond to the suffering of hundreds of people inside Parchman Prison. That’s why we’re  demanding Mississippi’s Governor and elected officials take the following steps immediately:

  1. Moving all of the incarcerated men to a more humane facility and ensuring that all men have access to food, clean water, suitable sleeping conditions, and adequate health care; 
  2. Conducting a full and independent investigation into the murders of five incarcerated men, including any officers or prison personnel who may have been involved; and 
  3. Beginning a formal process to reduce incarceration in Mississippi and shut down Parchman Prison for good.

Sign the petition below to demand action now! 

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