Free 15-year-old black girl Grace – sent to jail for not doing her homework

Only in America can a black kid get sent to jail for not doing her homework. It’s unbelievable but true.

Your help is urgently required. We reproduce below the email we received from US civil rights organisation The Color of Change.


Have you heard the story about Grace?

15-year-old Grace, a Black girl from Michigan, was sent to jail during the height of the pandemic because she didn’t complete her homework.1 Rather than implementing a humane plan to get her back on track, Judge Mary Ellen Brennan decided to punish her with months in a cage.

How did we get here? And why was jail time the only remedy for a 15-year-old girl?

Simply put, the school to prison pipeline is real

Far too often, schools, prosecutors, and elected officials take a “zero tolerance” approach when dealing with behavioral problems in schools. Minor infractions like cursing, not completing homework, fighting with classmates, and missing class are seen as “criminal offenses” in the eyes of the court. And because Black communities and schools are overpoliced, Black children are disproportionately arrested and sent to juvenile detention for these minor issues.

We shouldn’t have to say this, but here we are: Kids. Do. Not. Belong. In. Cages.

#FreeGrace: Demand Oakland County Prosecutor Jessica Cooper drop all charges against Grace immediately.

At a May probation hearing for Grace, Judge Brennan, the presiding judge of the Oakland County Family Court Division, sentenced her to juvenile detention for violating her probation. Judge Brennan argued that Grace was “guilty on failure to submit to any schoolwork and getting up for school.”

Our criminal legal system is hellbent on doling out punishment to Black kids in court — their safety and wellbeing be damned. Even in the height of a deadly pandemic, Grace was separated from her family and sent to a jail facility where she’s now at a higher risk of contracting and dying from COVID-19. And that decision was upheld last week when Judge Brennan denied Grace’s tragic pleas to be released from jail.2

Thousands of Graces across the US

As shocking as her story is, there are thousands of Graces across the country — young Black girls who’ve been arrested, caged, and punished instead of receiving the counseling, mental health treatment, and academic support they need.

Tell Oakland County Prosecutor Jessica Cooper: Free Grace Now!

Too often, Black and Brown kids are funneled from their schools to juvenile detention centers for matters that should be handled at school — minor offenses like disciplinary issues, tardiness, and truancy. What Black students actually need are trained professionals who can support them through high-stress environments. That means more counselors, therapists, and mediation experts. 

Judge Brennan and the Oakland County court would rather invest in criminalizing a young Black girl than in her academic success and mental health. 

Add your name now: Stand with us to #FreeGrace. 

The criminal legal system should not have a role in disciplining our children. But because of the lack of investment in schools, teachers, and counselors, overfunded police departments, correctional systems, and jails are used as an intervention for Black kids. And the numbers speak for themselves. Black girls are six times more likely to be suspended than their white counterparts. And in Michigan, Black youth are incarcerated more than four times as often as white youth.3

Elected leaders invest hundreds of millions of dollars into policing our communities — but what would it look like if this money were given to counselors and teachers? What would it look like if resources were spent on investing in the mental health of our kids? We have to stop the systemic criminalization of Black youth starting with releases those who are needlessly incarcerated.

Grace must be released.

Until justice is real, 

Scott, Rashad, Arisha, Erika, Malachi, Marybeth, Madison, Leonard, Ernie, McKayla and the rest of the Color Of Change team


References:

1. “A Teenager Didn’t Do Her Online Schoolwork. So a Judge Sent Her to Juvenile Detention.” ProPublica. https://act.colorofchange.org/go/255754?t=10&akid=44229%2E6328536%2EpC0Xn5

2. “Michigan judge denies release of teenage girl who was jailed after not doing homework.” NBC News. https://act.colorofchange.org/go/256134?t=12&akid=44229%2E6328536%2EpC0Xn5

3. “A Teenager Didn’t Do Her Online Schoolwork. So a Judge Sent Her to Juvenile Detention.” ProPublica. https://act.colorofchange.org/go/255754?t=14&akid=44229%2E6328536%2EpC0Xn5

4. “Cops and No Counselors.” ACLU. https://act.colorofchange.org/go/134841?t=16&akid=44229%2E6328536%2EpC0Xn5

Anti-racist vigil after attack on church minibus in manchester

https://www.facebook.com/events/287278622550033/

After racist vandals target black congregation church #WeStandTogether united against racism and intimidation

“A church in Longsight has been targeted by racists. It is a black congregation who do lovely stuff in the Longsight area. Their minibus was smashed to bits and graffitied with ‘all lives matter’.

“We are holding a gathering to stand up to the racists at 2.30pm this Sunday outside the United Church of God on Rushford Street. M12 4UG”

Come and show solidarity . Socially distanced with masks please- all welcome.

NFAC militia Louisville march for Breonna set to brush aside far-right

Latest – 18:58 EST 25th July 2020:

Three people were injured in accidental fire before the NFAC march took place.

In a speech to thousands of militia members and protesters Grandmaster Jay gave the city authorities four weeks to charge the officers who killed Breonna Taylor.

The fascist Three Percenters militia were heavily outnumbered on the day.

Latest – live feed from Courier Journal 25th July 2020:

NFAC rally in downtown Louisville

The group will march to Jefferson Square.

Posted by Courier Journal on Saturday, July 25, 2020

On Friday 76 people were arrested in Louisville, Kentucky, in a police clampdown on peaceful protests in the city.

Protesters had blocked an intersection and the police responded with mass arrests.

The move comes before a threatened clash between black militia group the NFAC (Not Fucking Around Coalition) and fascist Kentucky Three Percenters militia.

The NFAC which came to prominence on 4 July with an armed march in Georgia at a location at which KKK white supremacist terror group supporters regularly gather to pay homage.

That paramilitary parade was entirely peaceful but there is a danger of clashes today, assuming the Facebook posts from the far-right are not just so much hot air.

From their actions on Friday the police seem to be making a statement about whose side they will be on.

Given the long traditions of racism in the force, the black militia can expect little in the way of facilitation as they exercise their constitutional rights.

NFAC Louisville march to press justice for Breonna Taylor

No police officers has been charged for the cold bloodied killing of Breonna.

The avowed aim of today’s NFAC formation is to press for justice for Breonna Taylor, a black woman who worked as an emergency medical technician who was brutally murdered in her home by Louisville police.

The NFAC led by grandmaster Jay had originally intended to form-up at Central High School, where legendary boxer and activists Mohammed Ali went to school.

Those plans have since changed.

A police spokesperson says the NFAC militia will instead be assembling at Baxter Square Park at Jefferson Street and 11th and 12th streets at 12 noon and then march to Jefferson Square Park.

NFAC’s Grandmaster Jay speaks before Louisville militia march

Feds repression in Portland faces growing resistance

For two months there have been daily protests against racial inequality and police brutality in Portland, Oregon.

Police repression has not been enough to stop the protests and so Trump has upped the ante, as he makes a bid to turn law and order into an election issue from which he can benefit, such is his cynicism.

But last night saw thousands of citizens on the streets as the movement widens not just as a protest for black lives but against the violent repression of the Fed forces, in the shape of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Border Patrol agencies.

Both agencies have become heavily militarised over the years and are now being used against ordinary US citizens, in action lawmakers condemn as illegal.

Federal units have been operating as if in a war zone and using the tactics and operational procedures befitting of a full-blown dictatorship.

Protesters have been snatched and arrested by individuals dressed in unmarked camouflage suits. Eighteen now face serious Federal charges, raising the stakes further.

Portland citizens shot, gassed and clubbed by Trump stormtroopers

Peaceful citizens, including the city’s major, armed services veterans and a peaceful contingent of all-women protesters, have been tear-gassed and/or clubbed by the Feds.

As seen elsewhere in the US, the press has also been a frequent target of law enforcement bodies.

So-called non-lethal weapons that can in fact be lethal depending on how they are used, have been deployed with wild abandon by Federal forces acting as an out of control occupying force in the city.

Attempts to get judges to rule the deployment of the violent Fed troops illegal have failed so far.

The protest movement is overwhelmingly white, and that’s what probably riles Trump and his stormtroopers more than anything else.

Activists are attempting to organise for strikes in the city to drive out the Feds.

Cutting off all services to the Fed buildings in the city and the associated troops that were brought in under the pretence of protecting that property, could be a highly effective approach.

The people of Portland urgently need solidarity of the BLM movement and others from around the US and abroad.

Watch this space for further developments.

Support nurse Monisola Abiodun’s fight against discrimination and oppression

Manisola Abiodun sent BLMM this appeal to raise funds to fight a civil case against her employer. She is not able to name the employer, but suffice to say it is a major general hospital in north London. Please give generously.


I am a qualified nurse with 22 years of experience. My passion has always been in cancer nursing (Haematology) I have been subjected to many forms of discrimination. In fact, I don’t remember not ever been treated as ‘less than’ my white colleagues .  Like many black nurses I got used to it (a way of protecting my feelings and to ensure that I am  focused on what was important: Patients’ care).

In the last year, my current NHS hospital employer have subjected me to unimaginableunfair treatment and this has continued. I have chosen to take the matter up legally. In all honesty, my case is not unique, but I have chosen to stand against a huge institution like my place of employment because I am just sick of it. 

I will gratefully appreciate your financial support to fight this case. I have both  a civil case and employment law case. Your financial assistance to fight these cases is most appreciated and I thank you in advance.

Monisola Abiodun fighting virus of Covid and racism

As a  BAME nurses in the NHS, significant numbers of us have been fighting the pandemic of discrimination, racism and all forms of unfair treatment and injustices for as long as we can remember. It is a virus that many of us have developed our own vaccination to combat. 

Many of us have settled for unimaginable unfairness yet the entrenchment of discrimination within the NHS does not know when to stop. The Covid-19 pandemic has shed some light on some of  the discrimination and racism in the NHS yet it appears that hospital Trusts are not taking note of this. 

I am a senior nurse. Like many, I devote my time, love, energy and passion into nursing. I have been subjected to unfair treatment at my place of work. I have been at this for a year now. It is costing me a significant amount in legal fees.

I am seeking financial assistance for legal fees in order to be able to fight the injustices that I have been subjected to. No amount is too small. I thank you for your assistance in advance for supporting me to fight the discrimination and oppression that  I have been subjected to.

Video exclusive: violent stop and search arrest of Michael Wilson, 64, in Mitcham on 22 July

Michael Wilson was walking home from work in Mitcham yesterday (Wednesday 22 July) when he and a colleague, Lloyd, were stopped by police.

An altercation ensued when they tried to handcuff Michael, who was then forced to the ground by police officers and his head repeatedly forced into the ground.

Michael was splitting blood from the injuries caused by the police. At one stage eight officers were involved in the incident.

Mr Wilson is 64-years-old.

The pair had been clearing a garden and were on their home. Michael had a bag with his tools in with may have been why the police picked on him.

A witness to the police assualt send this video to BLMM.

Michael was taken to Wimbledon police station.

Thanks to onlooker Janet Oliver for arranging for this video to be sent to BLMM and for her action in witnessing and holding to account the officers involved.

The officer at the centre of the violent arrest claims that Michael bit him, which the man denies.

Witnesses to the incident say that there was no sign of Michael biting and that he had no time to do so, between the initial conversation with the officer and being taken to the ground.

Janet Oliver commented: “The officer lied, the man never bit him.”

Lloyd concurs. “I didn’t see no biting,” he insists. “I told him not to resist and to give his name but the police just jumped on him and tried to handcuff him.”

violent arrest of Michael Wilson

This latest incident of police brutality follows the emergence of a video a few days ago of a teenager in Hertfordshire being stopped and assaulted by police.

NFAC says 5,000-strong militia formation headed to Louisville in show of force for Breonna Taylor

Latest – live feed from Courier Journal 25th July 2020:

NFAC rally in downtown Louisville

The group will march to Jefferson Square.

Posted by Courier Journal on Saturday, July 25, 2020

NFAC – the Not Fucking Around Coalition – which came to prominence after an armed march and rally at Stone Mountain Park, Georgia, on 4 July, says it will be marching in Louisville, Kentucky this Saturday (25th July) as part of the fight for justice for Breonna Taylor.

Breonna Taylor was murdered in her own home by Louisville police serving a so-called “no-knock” warrant in a raid supposedly looking for drugs.

No drugs were found but none of the officers have been charged with any wrongdoing.

Daily protests have taken place in the city since Breonna’s killing on 13 March.

Leader of the black militia, Grandmaster Jay, real name John Fitzgerald Johnson, says the militia will be forming up this Saturday 25th July in Louisville when the exercise their constitutional right to bear arms.

Attendees have been instructed to dress in “black boots, black button down shirts, black mask, shotgun, semi-automatic or rifle, pistols… thigh holsters or under your arm”.

The self-styled leader of the group said: “If you are not in that uniform, you won’t be in the formation.”

“No fake guns this time. I’m not playing with you all, I’m trying to keep you safe.”

NFAC throws down gauntlet to KKK terrorists

At the Stone Mountain gathering early this month, the NFAC threw down the gauntlet to white supremacist groups who had threatened to attack Black Lives Matter protesters.

The KKK terror group was “reformed” at the park in the early 20th century.

There was no confrontation at that time, but on Saturday there are noises indicating that far-right groups may mobilise to confront the NFAC.

Louisville’s mayor, Greg Fischer, says the city is ready “to make sure everybody is safe”.

NFAC meets with attorney general

In a surprising development, the NFAC leader is reported to have had a phone conversation with the attorney general in which he criticised the lack of action to date regarding the police who killed Breonna.

In a statement, shown in the second video below, Jay shares some more information:

“12 pm we are meeting at central high school – the school that the great Mohammed Ali came from.

“Show up at 12pm. Get everyone set in the stadium. Then we go see some people…

“Bring body armour”

“Bring body armour, if you have it, make sure you have plates. In this situation get your hands on some, get some level-three body armour…

Don’t bring a weapon you have never fired before…

“I have had some conversations with the attorney general of Louisville. The state does not want any trouble. I have been made privy to some information. They are not going to try and antagonise the NFAC.

“The people in Georgia told them they [the NFAC] don’t fuck around.. There’s going to be five times more of us than last time.”

As can be seen in the videos below, the NFAC has certainly captured the public imagination, with reports of people organising car pools for the formation.

Statement from Jay at 2:20 in the video below:

While nothing has happened to the cops who killed Breonna, the city police force has managed to rake in $3 million in overtime payments from local taxpayers for the policing of protests.

Tribe Named Athari (LDNBLM) calls ‘conversation’ RALLY – brixton, friday 24th july 5pm

Tribe Named Athari (formerly LDNBLM) invite you to link up.

Windrush Square, Brixton, London

Friday, 24th July 5pm

A rally happening in the heart of Brixton. Less of a demonstration and more of a conversation.

A platform for discussion and expression!

We want to bring further understanding to who we are and what we stand for.

Tribe Named Athari (TNA) was formerly LDNBLM and were keyfacilitators in some of the major London protests.

‘Athari’ is Swahili (we think) for impact.

BLM Facts and Stats on why black lives matter – thanks to ABLUK

From All Black Lives UK

When we shout Black Lives Matter, we never said other lives don’t matter…

…we said WE MATTER TOO.

We can go on for days explaining to you why we have to still scream Black Lives Matter, but let’s let the ‘Facts + Stats’ do the talking!

Creds to our Co-Founder @n0tasha_ and our graphic designer Tom for creating these ✊🏾✨

Black Lives Matter Facts + Stats, compiled by ABLUK

Black women are five times more likely to die during pregnancy.

Black people are 10 times more likely to be stopped and searched.

Black people are 3.5 times more likely to be arrested.

Black people serve prison sentences that are 50% longer for the same crimes.

Black Caribbean children are 2.5x more likely to be temporarily excluded from school and 3x more likely to be permanently excluded.

White households on average earn 18% more than Black Caribbean households.

Only 37% of Black Caribbean people own their own homes compared to 68% for White British people

For every one white person, 3.7 black people are detained under Mental Health Act.

More ‘Facts + Stats’ to come…

Video: Herts police in violent assault on 16-year-old, knee on neck

“Let go of my hand or I will f**king smash your face in, do you understand” screams a Hertfordshire police officer as he arrests mixed race 16-year-old youth in Hatfield.

The police chased the youth, took him to the ground. He was detained and arrested for suspicion of possession of drugs, strip searched and found to be carrying nothing and subsequently released.

The teenager pleaded with a passerby not to leave as he feared even more violent assault or worse at the hands of the police.

Knee on neck in widespread use by British police?

The violence of the arrest included another clearly documented use of the infamous knee on neck restraint technique.

This follows an incident in Islington last week and another in Brighton.

These are of course just the incidents we know about because they were caught on video by alert members of the public.

His mother, Lisa, has accused the police of carrying out a racist attack in the way he was singled out and subsequently assaulted.

“I do believe this was a racist attack,” she said.

“He is covered in bruises. We are very frightened that this officer is still serving although the incident has been referred to the Independent Office for Police Conduct, the body for monitoring misconduct.”

Of the three friends only the white girl was allowed to leave the police officers’ presence unmolested.

The family have seen the racist officer three times outside their home since the violent attack.

Sack racist police now!

Why has this violent racist policeman faced no discipline. Indeed, why does he still have a job?

When asked why the teenager was stopped, the police says he looked “suspicious”, by which they presumably mean he looked a bit black.

More details at The Hertfordshire Advertiser

https://www.hertsad.co.uk/news/sixteen-year-old-hatfield-boy-says-he-was-assaulted-by-police-1-6753204?jwsource=cl

Solidarity against police brutality and racism