2015: What now? What next?
Following the reflection of our efforts in 2014, below are some aims for 2015.
This can’t happen without you. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if anything below calls you to work together with us.
Internal – Goals for the Empty Cages Collective
- Increase the number of people involved in the collective itself
- Increase the number of ex-prisoners involved both in the collective (and the wider movement)
- Set more SMART targets as a group – be clearer about what we want to achieve and why. Accept that we can’t do everything and prioritise our efforts more.
- Organise more sustainably, have more physical meet-ups, socials and time-off from living and breathing prison.
- Find a way to start a bank account, develop a creative fundraising plan and look for more sources of income for our work beyond grants
- Fill in the blank pages of our website! Prioritise finishing the resources section. Subscribe to more newsletters & websites to access more up to date content. Publish more writing from ex and current prisoners.
- Be more explicit about our anarchist position and how we centre resistance to prisons as part of a larger struggle against the state and capitalism. Consciously try to support people to connect the dots at all the events we organise or participate in.
- Have at least three dedicated social media volunteers who can utilise social media to increase our impact
Build on our own knowledge of the Prison Industrial Complex and prison abolition. Increase our understanding of:
- Transformative Justice
- Alternatives to Policing
- Abolitionist strategies including ‘non-reformist reform’
- Historical resistance in & outside prisons in the UK & Europe
- The prison industrial complex in the UK and who is making money from the P.I.C and how.
External – Our movement building goals
Relationship & Movement Building
- Develop more ways to build relationships and work with current prisoners beyond our existing networks and friendships
- Work with more existing groups and movements, from different but interconnected struggles
- Develop relationships with more groups internationally
- Support new groups to start in more cities and towns across the UK
- Facilitate more workshops with people harmed by the P.I.C
- Organise a second Tear Down the Walls Tour
- Organise a massive Prison Abolition Conference in 2015 that brings together people harmed by the P.I.C, organisers and those resisting the system
- Start organising a European-wide anti-prisons gathering
- Organise a Transformative Justice gathering to accelerate organising around transformative justice in the UK
Prison Union Organising
- Contact Ben Gunn and research past prisoner organising in the UK
- Work with the IWW (Industrial Workers of the World) to establish a union of incarcerated workers in the UK
- Be a visible outside voice & solidarity link for prison uprisings, actions and riots that make the system unworkable.
Resistance Campaigns: Community Action on Prison Expansion
- Support local groups to become stronger & more organised
- Help to start new groups
- Organise several international days and weeks of action in 2015
- Organise a large action-camp in collaboration with Reclaim the Fields in the Summer of 2015 to resist expansion plans, especially the North Wales Prison
- Design a ‘generic’ leaflet about prison expansion and the P.I.C in the UK
- Successfully resist expansion plans: Halt the development of the mega prison in Wrexham, work with Close Campsfield to prevent the extension of Campsfield Detention Centre, force the government to abandon their Secure College plans, prevent the buiding of a prison in West London before it starts. Make prison profiteers re-think pursuing their profit from caging people in the UK.
Publications, Resources & Materials
- Increase the visibility of the ECC by writing more articles in magazines, especially Inside Times.
- Develop a publications collective that can respond to article requests.
- Create stickers that can be distributed for a UK-wide sticker campaign – especially near prisons, so families and friends of prisoners can learn about abolition struggles.
- Produce a report in collaboration with Corporate Watch detailing the P.I.C as an industry.
- Produce a zine that can introduce abolition.
- Develop more visual tools to communicate prison abolition e.g. Street art, films, photography, comics
- Design a ‘generic’ leaflet about prison abolition that can be used at events
- Have a more organised distro of books, merchandise, zines, badges & more.