“Hep C: A New Death Row.”
When I left Death Row, little did I know that I was entering another quieter, non-obvious Death Row. Here, I’m not speaking of Pennsylvania’s draconian life sentences, what I’ve called slow Death Row.
No, I mean death by medical neglect and a malicious form of malpractice by the DOC’s failure to treat the deadly liver infection Hepatitis C. At our court hearings in December 2015, we learned of the DOC’s secret protocol which explicitly refuse to even consider treating any prisoner unless and until a person had esophageal varices or, in English, bleeding from one’s throat.
A federal judge sitting in Scranton, PA, Robert Mariani,looked at that protocol and twice, twice, declared it unconstitutional. For lawyers, jailhouse lawyers, and especially you, members of the NLG or National Lawyers Guild, this is your open door to bring law to the people, to save lives, not to mention help, and to make state DOC medical officials serve medical needs and not profit motives.
I end on this note. Today, in Pennsylvania prisons, indeed in this very prison, prisoners are still being turned away because DOC medical continues to apply its malicious and unconstitutional profit-driven protocol. Our work is not yet done. From imprisoned nation, this is Mumia Abu-Jamal.
These commentaries are recorded by Noelle Hanrahan of Prison Radio.