State of California
Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation
Date: August 6, 2021
To: Inmate Population
Subject: STAFF VACANCY PLAN - INSTITUTIONAL ROTATIONAL SCHEDULE
Mule Creek State Prison (MCSP) will implement an Institutional Rotational Schedule (IRS) due to sustained critical and significant custodial vacancies, exhausting involuntary overtime procedures resulting in significant custody positions left vacant at the beginning of the shift. These vacancies have resulted in frequent program closures to facilities A, B, and C.
The purpose of the implementation of the IRS, is to ensure critical positions are filled, to limit program closures to all facilities, and provide relief for staff fatigue, while allowing programing to facilities A, B, and C on a rotational basis. The IRS will limit the need for involuntary overtime for on duty staff to fill vacant positions, and the positions will be filled by using the IRS redirection plan.
The IRS rotation will be designated by Facility and Teams rotating the position to be redirect (Attachment-A). The Watch Commander will implement the IRS based on the rotational calender schedule (Attachment-B). The facility responsible for redirecting staff to fill vacancies shall modify their program for the duration of the shift.
Program modifications will be as follows:
• No Yard
• No Dayroom
• Normal Phone Access
• Showers for Critical Workers only
• Canteen/Packages Controlled movement
• PIA/Education/Law Library - Normal
• Mental Health Groups 1:1 - Normal
• Priority Health Care ducats - Normal
• Medication - at the clinic window - controlled movement.
• Inmate Activity Groups - Normal
Should there be no need to modify program on the Facility for Second Watch or Third Watch based on no staffing shortages, the Facility shall run normal program.
The IRS rotation is effective Saturday, August 7, 2021. Should you have any questions or concerns regarding this matter, please contact your Facility Captain.
Mule Creek State Prison
After 1 1/2 yr. covid chaos/loss of program-religious services - etc... the nonsense continues.
WE NEED $6,500,000 more to pay a signature gathering firm to quality the initiative.
$1,000,000 more to hire communication consultants for 2021.
WE RAISED $1,617,389 Total, to date
Grassroots Fundraising, to date $62, 389
Ballot Committee Carry Over from Proposition 17 $80,000
Foundation Grants $1,475,000
Help Us Repeal California's Three Strikes Law
A message from the Repeal Three Strikes Ballot Committee, of which Initiate Justice is a member.
During the "Tough on Crime" era, Californians voted in favor of Proposition 184 in 1994, which enacted the Three Strikes Law. Decades later, families and communities who have been most affected by the law are leading the movement to remove it and reinvest in our communities.
That is why the Repeal CA's Three Strikes Law Ballot Committee is working to place an initiative on the November 2022 ballot that would eliminate the Three Strikes Law once and for all.
There are many steps we need to take before qualifying to be on the ballot and ultimately winning the election. One of the most significant steps is raising approximately $14,000,000 to be able to pay signature gatherers (we need about 1 million signatures to qualify for the ballot), campaign consultants, advertising, and more. That is a large amount, but working together, we can do this.
We have launched a Grassroots Fundraising Committee, where system-impacted people and allies have done an amazing job raising money through their personal networks. We are reaching out to you as a currently incarcerated person to seek your support as well and the support of your loved ones.
If you can support directly, please fill out the enclosed Trust Withdrawal form via your counselor and follow the instructions on the form. Your loved ones on the outside can donate & sign up to support by visiting our website: www.repealthreestrikes.org
This is OUR movement. In this movement, we value transparency and we want to keep you updated on all of the money we bring in and how it is being used in the work to remove Three Strikes sentences, and ultimately, bring thousands of you home.
Together, we will win!
If you have any questions, please feel free to send us a letter or have your Loved Ones reach out to us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
REPEAL CALIFORNIA'S THREE STRIKES
Paid for by Repeal CA's Three Strikes Law Ballot Committee
P.O. Box 31022
Oakland, VA 94604
the inside journal
Positive Psychology studies show that frequently practicing gratitude can enhance one's quality of life even in the harshest of environments. In a project by Grateful Anyhow, over 350 incarcerated men and women practiced gratitude through writing. Results demonstrated a link between grateful living and an increase in resilience and wellbeing. Practicing gratitude is shown to improve physical health, self-esteem, coping skills, and life satisfaction. Embracing grateful living can help develop a positive framework in a meaningful way for those who have little control over their environment, relationships, and future. We invite you to practice gratitude in a face of difficulty. Interested in trying it out? Write down three things you're grateful for!
We receive thousands of letters every few months! Please give us a month and a half to reply to you.
When you send us multiple letters asking for a response, it just takes us longer to get any answer back to you since we have to sort, read, and write to your duplicate letters. Also, please write as clearly as possible on new member sign up sheets and letters to us so that our staff and volunteers can read it. For letter guidelines/tips, see page 4.
Who is Initiate Justice?
Initiate Justice is an organization led by people whose lives have been impacted by the California prison system - people who are currently inside, formerly incarcerated, or those who have loved ones inside. Our goal is to build the political power of people impacted by incarceration so we can fight for freedom and bring everyone home. We are 40,000 incarcerated members, 162 Inside Organizers, 180 Outside Organizers, and members and volunteers across California, working together to build our knowledge and understanding of the political system, and changing laws to build the world we want to live in.
You're holding the summer issue of The Inside Journal!
Initiate Justice's quarterly newsletter has become The Inside Journal, a 4-times-a-year magazine that shares news about California state laws, CDCR policies, and campaigns pushing for prison abolition, as well as stories and articles gathered from Initiate Justice's inside and outside members. We hope the magazine is informative and fun, and builds connections between all parts of the Initiate Justice community.
• Letter from Secretary of State about voting rights - Pg 2
• Member Artwork - Pg 4
• Policy Corner - Pg 5 & 6
INITIATE JUSTICE MAILING ADDRESS
PO BOX 15836
Los Angeles, CA 90015
An Outside Member on: Legislative Visits
Since the end of March, over 95 Outside Members have participated in 40 visits with legislators! These visits are powerful opportunities to advocate for the bills IJ is working on. By sharing your and your loved one's lived experiences with California's Assemblymembers, we CAN and DO move the hearts and minds of people in power. Over half of this year's participants were from the Institute of Impacted Leaders cohorts, and for many, this was their first legislative visit ever. As a first-timer I was super nervous, but I left each visit feeling inspired and fired up by my group's stories and the collective power of IJ! - Melinda N.
An Outside Organizer on: Virtual Townhall
On May 7th, all 4 cohorts of The Institute of Impacted Leaders attended a virtual Town Hall hosted by Initiate Justice, with four California Assemblymembers, three State Senators & their staff as guests. The purpose was to hold a discussion about Initiate Justice's bills, as well as to ask our legislators for their support in ending mass incarceration. This was my first time attending a Town Hall and it was a powerful experience.
Participants as well as legislators and their staff shared very hard, yet inspiring stories. The fact that the attending legislators were raw, honest and comforted participants reminded me that despite their political views, they are also human. What is most important is that they were able to see firsthand that our loved ones on the inside DO have a voice, and when we come together that voice is STRONG. -Nancy
A Letter from the California Secretary of State
Greetings! As your California Secretary of State, I am responsible for ensuring that elections in our state are secure and fair. As a defender and protector of civil rights, I want to ensure that every eligible Californian can register to vote and understands their voting rights.
On January 1, 2021 state law was changed and now every person serving parole for a felony conviction is eligible to vote.
What does this mean? This means, once you have left custody of a state prison, you can register to vote. Now, people on state or federal parole and who are US citizens are eligible to register to vote.
Who is eligible to vote? To register to vote in California, you must be:
• United States citizen and a resident of California,
• years old or older on Election Day,
• Not currently serving a state or federal prison term for the conviction of a felony, and
• Not currently found mentally incompetent to vote by a court.
It is important you know your voting rights. Eligible U.S. citizens can register to vote if serving probation or in Post-Release Community Supervision, or if they have a prior conviction.
How do I register to vote? Upon release from prison, you can find a voter registration card at most US Post Offices and public libraries. You can call our voter hotline at 1-800-345-VOTE (8683) to have a voter register card emailed to you or register online at www.RegisterToVote.ca.gov
Please call our voter hotline at 1-800-345-VOTE (8683) if you or your family have any questions about registering to vote. If anyone prevents you from registering to vote upon release, please call the hotline immediately.
SHIRLEY N. WEBER, Ph.D.
California Secretary of State
Abolition is healing.
We need to heal. Society can no longer punish harm with more harm. We deserve to heal, not live in cages. We deserve a cure, not just a diagnosis. If you're reading this, it isn't too late, you can heal. We all can. We all deserve love. We all deserve joy. We all deserve compassion. We all deserve health. We all deserve liberation. Abolition is healing. -Crash
Outside Organizers on: Healing
For healing to start, one must remove things that block the process, like laws that impose lengthy sentences. That kind of time can take hope from incarcerated people, and abolishing these laws restores that hope and reaffirms humanity so that folks inside may have the opportunity to make amends. Abolition makes it so healing can become contagious, spreading throughout prions and the rest of society, too. -Erica
Healed people heal society.
An Inside Member on: Healing
I entered every class I could. I began to learn about myself, I discovered "Insight", and I entered college. I was rehabilitating myself. I was a changed man, and I felt good about myself, I felt good that my criminal minded personality was gone. I needed to be a part of something that represented people like me, so I became an Inside Member of "Initiate Justice" so I could do my part by spreading the word concerning mas incarceration, LWOP, and how we can end it. -Anthony S.
Initiate Justice's Institute of Impacted Leaders is a 12-week organizing training program designed for people directly impacted by mass incarceration. Participants learn about community organizing, how the policy process works in California, how to change statewide laws, and how to advocate for themselves and their loved ones in prison.
This spring, the Institute graduated 74 people from Fresno, the San Fernando Valley, Orange County, and Long Beach. In the summer, we will have cohorts in Bakersfield, San Diego, Santa Barbara, and San Jose.
"Leadership is not about a title or a designation. It's about impact, influence, and inspiration." -Robin S. Sharma
My name is Melinda Johnson, and I'm a facilitator for Initiate Justice's Institute of Impacted Leaders Long Beach Cohort. It's been an amazing eleven weeks so far. I've met some incredible leaders in our cohort as well as other cohorts. Having the opportunity to facilitate has been a pleasure. My most heartfelt moments were listening to the different stories of those impacted by incarceration, having the opportunity to speak to the leader within to reposition their pain for purpose, by reminding them that their story matters and their efforts to use their voices will never be in vain. -Melinda J.
1. AB 256 is authorized by Assemblymember
2. Where IJ bills have to go now that they've passed Assembly
3. AB 292 is the _______ to Programming Act
4. Our creative theme for this issue's Call for Submissions
5. Last name of the California Secretary of State
Show us your creativity! Our theme: Abolition. Send us an art piece - a drawing, poem, or anything else - that reflects a world after abolition. Instructions on how to submit work is on Page 4.
Artwork from our Inside Members
Image 1 by Ray Williams - Faceless adults are surrounded by their kids and loved ones. The words "REUNITED" are repeated in the background.
Image 2 by Miguel Barajas - Two tattooed hands are holding down papers and checking off "INIATE JUSTICE" in blue.
Image 3 by Paul Ahumada - Two hands are making the shape of a heart with handcuffs around the wrist.
Image 4 by Emilio Carmargo - Two birds are looking at each other. One bird stands on a platform, unbothered. The other bird has it's wings spread as if it were pushed off the platform.
Initiate Justice is here to help you build your political power, with the goal of helping you and everyone inside come home and to create a new society based on true justice. One part of justice is consent - that people should have the choice to agree to engage in a conversation or activity voluntarily. Initiate Justice receives many amazing letters from you, our Inside Members, but we have also been receiving letters with lewd, sexual, or romantic content directed towards our staff, our Outside Organizers, and our Outside Members and volunteers. All the photos in the Inside Journal are meant to build community with you as a member, but people engaging in IJ's work on the outside are not part of IJ in order to penpal or start a romantic relationship. We ask that you please keep your letters on topic to your liberation, power building, education, and political issues, and not romance or sexual comments. Thank you.
I am unchangeable
Not molded by the sculptors of mainstream culture
I am discovering
A new story created, edited, and published
Only by me
I am challenged
By those who fear my shadow's canopy
I am aware
Of the self-drive, God's gift handed down
I am pursuing
Something only understandable by kings and queens
Pure water poured out
A cup of what used to be poison
I am one of a few
I am unstoppable
Image 5 by Jovan Villela - a stream is running through tall grass. Rocks are in the stream and the sky is blue and clear.
How To Submit Your Work to The Inside Journal
We will ask for submission of artwork, poems, and stories from our Inside Members (you!). To participate:
⚫ Mail your work to our P.O. Box and write "Attn. Magazine"
② Keep written material to less than 150 words. Do not send anything you need back.
③ We cannot send anything back.
By sending The Inside Journal artwork, poems, & stories you are giving Initiate Justice permission to use your material and publish it in future issues of the magazine.
Assembly Bill 292 (Asm. Mark Stone): Access to Programming Act.
This bill seeks to eliminate common barriers to programming such as; long waitlists, frequent transfers, and inflexible work schedules that conflict with program availability, while also ensuring that programming continues during lockdowns. This bill also creates a path for people who have their VIO determinate removed to earn half time.
AB 292 passed the Senate Public Safety Committee on Tues, July 6th, and is now in the Senate Appropriations Committee. Thank you to everyone who submitted a letter of support, we were able to send over 1,000 letters to the Legislature and will send the rest of the letters directly to the Governor's office in the Fall when it comes time for him to sign the bill. We will try not to amend the bill, but we may be forced to take out the additional credit earned for those with violent felonies.
Assembly Bill 1509 (Asm. Alex Lee): The Anti-Racism Sentencing Abuse Act.
This bill did not pass the Assembly Appropriations committee on May 20 and is dead for the duration of the 2021-22 legislative cycle.
The bill was considered too controversial which is likely led to its downfall. We are still figuring out next steps but we are committed to the long term vision of ending gun enhancements in CA. We will continue the fight.
Statement from Asm. Alex Lee
"I'm deeply appreciative to everyone who supported AB 1509, the Anti-Racism Sentencing Reform Act. Unfortunately, AB 1509 was held in the Assembly Appropriations Committee and will no longer be moving forward this year. While this is painfully disappointing, I will continue working with the community and this fight to rectify antiquated tough on crime policies that have fueled mass incarceration and marginalized communities of color for decades. It's past time we end our society's reliance on punishment and extreme sentencing by passing the Anti-Racism Sentencing Reform Act."
Assembly Bill 256 (Assemblymember Ash Kalra): The Racial Justice Act 4 All.
AB 256 (Kalra), The Racial Justice Act 4 All, builds upon the Racial Justice Act, passed in 2020 (AB 2542 - Kalra), that prohibits the state from seeking or obtaining a criminal conviction, or from imposing a sentence, based upon race, ethnicity or national origin. This bill extends these protections to those who have already been impacted by unfair convictions and sentences. Providing for retroactivity will give these individuals an equal opportunity to pursue justice. AB 256 passed the Senate Public Safety Committee on Tuesday, June 29th, and is now in the Senate Appropriations Committee.
We are still awaiting the pending Regulations for AB 965 (Stone). AB 965 will be implemented starting on Jan 1, 2022, and we know that CDCR will likely only apply Educational Merit Credits to YOPD's. We will use the public comment period once the Regulations are announced to ask CDCR to apply all types of credits to someone's YOPD to ensure the spirit of the bill is not undermined.
Thank you to the thousands of members who sent us legislative letters of support. We were able to read some of the support letters during legislative visits and submitted letters to policy committees to be entered into the formal record for our bills!
Expansion of Good Conduct Credits
On May 1st, CDCR announced changes to Good Conduct Credits. CDCR will increase the Good Time Credits for individuals serving time for crimes under Penal Code 667.5(c), and for those who were sentenced for a nonviolent crime under California's Three Strikes Law. Credit earning for people convicted for violent crimes will increase from 20 percent to 33.3 percent; and nonviolent crimes will increase from 33.3 to 50 percent. It will take six to eight months for everyone to receive their new dates.
We are aware of an issue in which some incarcerated people are receiving release dates that are later, not sooner under these credit changes. Primarily, people who were in Work Group M or F and earning 66.6% credits when the new rules went into effect on May 1, 2021 are ending up with later release dates than they had under the prior credit system.
If you believe that prison conduct or programming credits are not being fairly applied in your case, you should file an administrative appeal and pursue it to the highest level necessary. For most credit issues, use a CDCR Form 602 Inmate / Parolee Appeal. If you are being denied credit opportunities due to a disability, file a CDCR 1024 Reasonable Accommodation Request.
If you pursue an administrative appeal to the highest level of review, and are not satisfied with the responses, you can send copies of the appeal and responses to the Prison Law Office for review: Prison Law Office, General Delivery, San Quentin, CA 94964. The Prison Law Office is interested in making sure the CDCR applies its credit rules fairly.
The following bills are not being sponsored by Initiate Justice but could materially impact the lives of incarcerated people.
Don't write to us requesting specific information about these bills. We are not working on these bills and do not have more information than what is shared here.
• AB 124 (Kamlager): This bill will give more discretion to strike enhancements and recall sentences of people who were victims of human trafficking or intimate partner violence.
• AB 717 (Stone): This bill will require CDCR to provide a California Identification card or driver's license to every person released from state prison.
• AB 937 (Carrillo): This bill will stop the transfer of people to ICE custody after completion of jail or prison terms.
• AB 990 (Santiago): This bill establishes visiting as a civil right and establishes strong restrictions on denying a person visitation rights.
• AB 1210 (Ting): This bill changes the composition of the Parole Board to include more commissioners who do not come from a law enforcement background.
• AB 1224 (Levine): This bill allows anyone sentenced to LWOP to petition for resentencing. This bill is DEAD for the 2021-22 legislative cycle.
• AB 1540 (Ting): This bill cleans up the 1170(d) process by creating a presumption in favor of resentencing and requires the court to provide counsel to defendants when referred.
• SB 300 (Cortese): This bill will reform the special circumstances law that sentences those who weren't the actual killers to LWOP to allow for resentencing. This bill is NOT moving forward in 2021 but will be brought up again in 2022.
• SB 416 (Hueso): This bill will require CDCR to offer more college degree programs and prioritizes in-person teaching.
• SB 481 (Durazo): This bill will allow those sentenced to LWOP under the age of 25 to petition for resentencing. This bill is NOT moving forward in 2021 but will be brought up again in 2022.
• SB 483 (Allen): This bill retroactively repeals sentence enhancements for prior prison or county jail felony terms and for prior convictions of specified crimes related to controlled substance.
• SB 775 (Becker): This bill cleans up the Felony Murder Rule to clarify that a person who was convicted of attempted murder under the natural and probable consequences doctrine or any other theory under which malice is imputed to the person based solely on their participation in a crime or who was convicted of manslaughter when the prosecution was allowed to proceed on a theory of felony murder or murder under the natural and probable consequences doctrine, to apply to have their sentence vacated and be resentenced.
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