#CloseMSDF Campaign Launch Event

Start: Thursday, June 29, 2017 5:00 PM

End: Thursday, June 29, 2017 7:00 PM


We will be gathering at 5 pm in Room M605 at MATC to watch the premiere of Tim Coursen’s video about Milwaukee Secure Detention Facility (MSDF). Mr. Coursen is an independent producer who has made several videos about Wisconsin’s unjust penal system. A panel of EXPO leaders will respond to this video. Then we will hear from Janos Marton who managed JustLeadershipUSA’s #CLOSErikers Campaign which prompted New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio to commit to closing Rikers. At 6 pm, we will be marching to MSDF for a prayer vigil for all of the people who have died in MSDF and a press conference.


Wisconsin officials should support policies that would give all people the opportunity to be treated with fairness, dignity, and respect and to live in safe and healthy communities. Unfortunately, Wisconsin’s unjust revocation policies lead to the unnecessary incarceration of thousands of men and women every year. The state incarcerates many of these individuals at MSDF. These policies, which disproportionately harm people of color and people with disabilities, tear families apart, disrupt communities, and drain resources that could instead be used to build safer and stronger communities.

Problems facing people at MSDF include extreme heat, poor ventilation, no outdoor recreation, no access to sunlight, no in-person visits, being locked down for 21 hours a day, and other abuses. Several people, including EXPO leader James Wilborn, have died in this facility because their medical or psychiatric conditions were improperly monitored or left untreated.

It is time for Wisconsin to stop incarcerating people who have not been convicted of new crimes and join the growing number of states that are making significant investments in community-based alternatives to incarceration.

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