The Spark

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.” — Karl Marx

Upper Peninsula, Michigan:
State Prisoners Protest

Mar 28, 2016

On Sunday, March 20th, 1000 out of 1200 prisoners at the Kinross Correctional Facility in the U.P. acted together in protest of a new for-profit prison food vendor – Trinity. The prisoners walked out of the yard 20 minutes early. In a silent protest, they quietly went back to their cells. The next day – on Monday, 1,140 prisoners acted in unison, NOT going to lunch or dinner.

A corrections union rep said, “It is hard to get 1000 people to agree on anything.” These 1000 inmates were SO UPSET about the food quality they agreed to “take one action.”

The State of Michigan immediately met with Trinity and announced it had worked out a solution. By Tuesday, Trinity food service had brought in extra staff. There seemed to be enough workers to prepare the meals correctly.

But prisoners know very well not to trust the state and its promises. It was the prisoners’ own unity – and not promises – that got them a few decent meals.