6/19/2020 Juneteenth Liberation Demonstration

12 PM at Chester County Courthouse

Photo and event description from the demonstration’s Facebook event page:

People Across the nation are rising up against police brutality with the recent murders of Ahmad Arbery,Breonna Taylor, George Floyd,Dominique Fells,Riah Milton,Rayshard Brooks,and Oluwatoyin Salau. We are all reimagining what it looks like to truly heal harm, and rehabilitate humans. We have been focusing on deconstructing the current criminal justice system, because as it stands it unfairly and disproportionately targets black,brown, and poor lives.

The Chester County court system, Still uses the unfair practice of cash bail which creates one criminal justice system, for the wealthy and another for the working class. Effectively it criminalizes poverty, and punishes people with pretrial detention, just because they can’t afford to bail themselves out of jail. Spending even a week in jail pretrial has caused people to lose their jobs,their homes, and even their children,Just because they can’t afford to bail themselves out of jail.

Across the country, state and county officials have worked across party lines to depopulate jails and prisons because of how much they threaten to further spread the Covid-19 pandemic throughout our communities-inside and outside of prison walls.

We are protesting to call upon our leaders to put politics and questions about the next election to the side and be bold enough to take the action necessary to #standupforblacklives.

We stand in solidarity with the Movement for Black Lives:

We demand a divestment from the police and investment in black communities

We demand reparations for past and continuing harms

We demand black political power

We demand the rights of protesters to be respected

We demand Covid relief for our community

We demand that The Chester County Court System

-Immediately end the practice of Cash Bail for violent and nonviolent accused;

-Immediately lift/postpone imposition of detainers of every individual held on alleged probation violations based on new charges or for technical violations;

-Immediately modify bond of those held pretrial to nonmonetary and/or “release on their own recognizance” (‘ROR’);

-Cease parole and probation revocation proceedings and terminate long tails;

-Release all individuals with less than 6 months left in their sentence;

-Release all individuals incarcerated for misdemeanors, whether pretrial or serving a sentence;

-Release all individuals incarcerated for drug possession, sex work, and other nonviolent offenses;

-Release all elderly individuals (over 50) and those at high risk of vulnerability, including but not limited those with respiratory conditions, heart conditions, diabetes, cancer, or other autoimmune diseases;

-Release all pregnant individuals;

-Transfer all non-releasable individuals to less restrictive forms of custody, including electronic monitoring and house arrest, instructing them to self-isolate for 2 weeks;

-Review individuals on probation or otherwise confined to halfway houses and release those individuals to home confinement automatically;

-Terminate in-person reporting for those on pre- or post-trial supervision indefinitely;

-Allocate funding to provide for hotel voucher program and basic survival needs for those released without a housing plan;

-Provide Naloxone and a handoff for medication assisted treatment upon release for individuals coping with addiction;

We demand The District Attorney of Chester County:

-Immediately end the practice of Cash Bail for violent and nonviolent accused;

-Postpone the convening of grand juries;
Affirmatively support and not oppose the above-mentioned motions and petitions for relief;

-Withdraw and drop all pending charges for drug possession, sex work, and other nonviolent offenses.

Law enforcement agencies throughout Chester County should:

-Recall all pending warrants (that have not been served/executed);

-Delay dates of voluntary surrender for incarceration sentences as requested by defense;
Immediately cease arresting individuals for all offenses not directly implicating public safety or an individual’s physical well-being;
Immediately cease arrests on warrants for probation violations — technical and otherwise;

-Avoid new bookings into the jail at all costs, limiting incarceration for only the most immediate and severe instances of risk to public safety.

-Given the similarly dangerous conditions in immigrant detention centers and those jails and prisons that contract with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), we demand that Chester County Jail and county criminal justice officials NOT facilitate the detention of undocumented immigrants or the transfer of them to ICE custody.

We demand County government and the jail administration immediately:

-Issue an emergency order making phone calls or video visitations free for individuals detained at CCP ;

-Ensure all incarcerated people have unlimited and free access to: soap, hand sanitizer, hygiene products, showers and laundry service, NOT monetized through commissary;

-Provide cell sanitization services for those remaining in the facility at least one time daily;

-Provide free access to books and other reading and writing materials to all individuals incarcerated at the jail;

-Provide additional commissary items at-, below-, or no-cost to all individuals, to boost morale during the trying times ahead;
Facilitate the use of video visitation, including confidential video visitations for attorney visits.

We demand The Chester County Court System and District Attorney Deb Ryan to immediately stop the practice of Cash Bail in Chester County.

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