[HCCN] Support Human Rights in Maine. Contact the Legislative Council Today

Bergin/Garvey bluehillme at roadrunner.com
Fri Oct 2 07:31:51 EDT 2009

Dear Friends,

Please take a moment to read this attached bill (see Maine bill language) submitted by Rep. Jim Schatz, and the following email from M-PAC, and then quickly support this legislation by contacting the legislative council members (list follows here).  Also attached are short handouts that explain solitary confinement in Maine.  Thank you for distributing this information as widely as possible.

Judy Garvey
Volunteers for Hancock Jail Residents/The Landing Post-Release Project

Act Now to Defend Human Rights in Maine
Tell the Legislative Council you Support Legislation to Reduce the Use and Abuse of Solitary Confinement

Over the past three months, concerned Maine citizens have worked to develop appropriate legislation to address longstanding abuses in the segregation units of Maine State Prisons.  Last week, Representative Jim Schatz (Blue Hill) submitted the legislation.  This is an important step to create the critical dialogue necessary to advocate for true prison reform in this state and end human-rights violations in our correctional facilities.  Attached to this email is the bill language in its entirety.

Now the Legislative Council will decide whether to accept the bill for the upcoming 2010 legislative session.  THEY MAKE THEIR DECISION ON OCTOBER 15th.  The Legislative Council comprises of leadership from both the Democratic and Republican parties from both the House and the Senate.  Every other year in Maine, the state's legislative session is a "short" or "emergency" session.  The session that begins in January 2010 is one of these sessions.  Therefore, the Council decides which bills to pick up.  We need to generate bi-partisan support for this bill from both Republicans and Democrats.  PLEASE MAKE YOUR VOICE HEARD.  

The Council needs to understand the human rights crisis that is taking place in segregation units in Maine, so that they can make the right decision in a few weeks and decide to accept this bill.

The long-term use of solitary confinement is nothing short of torture.  WE DON'T TORTURE IN MAINE!

WE NEED YOUR HELP. To assist or ask questions, please contact  mainepac at gmail.com or poscreek at gmail.com

1. Can you host a potluck in the next week (or weekend) to gather letters of support for this campaign?
2. If you live in the district of one of these elected officials, can you arrange a meeting with them?
3. Can you send in a hand-written letter to the following elected officials?  
4. Can you email all of these elected officials? (Handwritten letters tend to be the most effective though email and phone calls are fine as well.)
5. Can you forward this email onto all of your friends and family in Maine?


By taking just a few minutes to help with this campaign, we can help to improve the lives of hundreds of Mainers!



Contact the following Legislative Council Members to express your support for Schatz's An Act to Reduce the Use and Abuse of Solitary Confinement. 

For more info on the use of solitary confinement in US Prisons read the attached handouts.

Representative Hannah Pingree (Speaker of the House) 
P. O. Box 243 
North Haven, ME 04853 
(207) 287-1300 
hannah at pingree.com 
District Towns: Brooklin, Deer Isle, Frenchboro, Isle au Haut, Mount Desert (part), North Haven, Stonington, Swan's Island, Tremont and Vinalhaven 

Senator Libby Mitchell (Senate President) 
277 Cushnoc Road 
Vassalboro, ME 04989 
207 622-2629 
http://www.mainesenate.org/mitch... (email link) 
District Towns: Augusta, China, Vassalboro, Oakland, Sidney 

Senator Philip Bartlett (Senate Majority Leader) 
141 South Street 
Gorham, Maine 04038 
207 324-4198 
http://www.mainesenate.org/bartl... (email link) 
District Towns: Gorham, part of Scarborough, part of Westbrook 

Senator Lisa Marrache (Assistant Senate Majority Leader) 
109 Silver Street 
Waterville, Maine 04901 
http://www.mainesenate.org/marra... (email link) 
District Towns: part of Waterville, Winslow, Albion, Benton, Unity Twnsp, Clinton, Pittsfield, Detroit 

Representative John Piotti (House Majority Leader) 
1075 Albion Road 
Unity, ME 04988 
(207) 287-1430 
piotti at uninets.net 
District Towns: Burnham, Freedom, Knox, Montville, Palermo, Thorndike, Troy and Unity 

Representative Seth Berry (Assistant House Leader) 
1245 River Road 
Bowdoinham, ME 04008 
(207) 737-4149 
seth at sethberry.org 
District Towns: Bowdoin, Bowdoinham and Richmond, plus the unorganized territory of Perkins Township 

Senator Kevin Raye (Senate Minority Leader) 
63 Sunset Cove Lane 
Perry, Maine 04667 
207 853-9406 
SenatorRaye at wwsisp.com 
District Towns: all of Eastern Washington County starting in Waltham 

Senator Jonathan Courtney (Assistant Minority Leader) 
31 Birchwood Lane 
Springvale, Maine 04083 
207 324-5467 
SenJon.Courtney at legislature.main... 
District Towns: Alfred, Limington, Lyman, Sanford and Waterboro 

Representative Joshua Tardy (House Minority Leader) 
P. O. Box 381 
Newport, ME 04953 
(207) 368-2828 
tardylaw at roadrunner.com 
District Towns: Corinna, Corinth (part), Exeter, Newport and Plymouth 

Representative Philip Curtis (Assistant House Minority Leader) 
93 Blackwell Hill Road 
Madison, ME 04950 
(207) 696-3052 
pdcurtis2 at hotmail.com 
District Towns: Madison, Norridgewock and Solon 

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