Monday, May 30, 2011

Update #1 on Sr Jackie Husson in "Medical Crisis in Prison"

Previous posting: Sr Jackie Husson in "Crisis Medical in Prison".... need help/prayers..


Leonard Eiger <>

Mon, May 30, 2011


Important Note:  In between my emails please check in at the Disarm

Now Plowshares Blog as I

posted brief updates there as I receive any new information to share.




This has been, and continues to be, a difficult time for all of us who

know and love Sr. Jackie Hudson.  First - Please know that there is an

extraordinary convergence of people, including lawyers and physicians

who are working virtually 24/7 on Jackie's behalf.  As of this moment

none of us has had direct contact with Jackie, and so we cannot

confirm her present health status.  That having been said, here is

what we know.


Since Sr. Carol Gilbert, who is also at Irwin County Detention Center,

informed us (on May 29th) of Jackie's severe chest pain and that

nothing was being done for her medical condition, Joe Power-Drutis

immediately set a process in motion to secure her transportation to a

hospital to reserve proper medical care.  He contacted everyone

possible, and engaged 2 physicians and 3 attorneys to engage directly

with the prison staff.  The prison has been completely uncooperative,

only saying that Jackie "was being taken care of."  She is evidently

in the prison medical facility (God only knows what that is like!!!).


At one point there was an indication that Jackie may have been

transported to the local hospital and then returned to the jail.

However, a followup conversation with staff at the local hospital

confirmed that Jackie has not been admitted there, and he staff

indicated that theirs is the only hospital in the area.  There is

absolutely no evidence that Jackie has been sent anywhere for proper

medical evaluation.


The prison medical facility, as far as I know, is ill equipped to

evaluate or treat Jackie's possible medical condition and experts

(MDs) agree that based on her presentation to prison medical staff,

she should have been immediately transported to a hospital emergency

facility for a thorough cardiac work-up.


Based on all the information we have received it appears that her

treatment since her chest pain began, even beyond her basic medical

needs, has been substandard and inhumane.


The legal team working on Jackie's behalf includes Bill Quigley, Legal

Director of the Center for Constitutional Rights; Anabel Dwyer, lawyer

and international human rights expert; and Blake Kramer, Tacoma-based

attorney who has been deeply involved in defending the Disarm Now

Plowshares.  I understand that the legal team is currently working

every possible angle, and one involves getting the Judge for the Y-12

trial, which was the reason for Jackie's current imprisonment, to

order her release/transport to the hospital.


Another major concern and an egregious disregard for the rule of law

is prison's refusal to allow Jackie's right to legal counsel.

Jackie's court-appointed attorney, Brad Henry, found out at the jail

that the Warden told all the staff at the jail that no information was

to be given out about Jackie, including her appointed council. The

prison is stonewalling every step of the way.


Beyond the obvious moral and ethical implications of the prison's

treatment of Jackie Hudson, it is evident that she is being deprived

of her Constitutional rights as well as essential human rights.  This

on top of Jackie's very real status as a Prisoner of Conscience, quite

literally a political prisoner in a nation that flouts both national

law and international humanitarian law and then imprisons those who

follow their conscience and the law to speak and act out to call on

our nation to uphold these laws.


This maltreatment must not stand.  The people operating Irwin County

Detention Center, a private, for profit prison, must be held

accountable for their actions.  If this is how they treat Jackie,

someone with a broad base of support,  I can only imagine the

mistreatment of a vast number of prisoners who have no one to advocate

on their behalf.  What of the forgotten???


Besides the work being done by this dedicated group to whom I've

referred, many of you out there are working on Jackie's behalf, and

for this I thank you all!  We evidently flooded the prison phone line

with calls, and I have no doubt that this has had an impact.  They

know we are watching!  I have contacted the ACLU of Georgia, asking

them to act on Jackie's behalf.  We are working on alerting media

locally(Georgia), regionally and nationally to Jackie's plight, and

will also be contacting members of Congress to act on her behalf.


What can you do to help Jackie?  For one thing, we can continue to

call, fax and/or email the prison to let them know we are watching and

demand that they send Jackie to the hospital.  The phone number is

229-468-4121. You may get a recorded message during some hours. There

is also an email listed:   Fax is 229-468-4186

Additional phone numbers: Warden Barbara Walrath – warden of Irwin

County Detention Center, 229-468-4120, Dr. Howard C. McMahan – Medical

Director of Irwin County Detention Center, 229-468-5177.  If you get

into a message system, LEAVE A MESSAGE!


Here are some suggested talking points:


Sr. Jackie Hudson, who is in your care and for whom you are

responsible, has had intense heart pain, which began Saturday

afternoon.  She is being obstinately denied proper medical care.  Her

symptoms suggest that she may have one or more occluded coronary

arteries.  If this is the case, her heart, as a muscle, will

progressively worsen in the hours and days to come.


Jackie must be taken to an emergency room immediately.  The Emergency

Department at the Irwin County Hospital verifies that Sr. Jackie has

not been taken to their hospital, and that there is no other local

hospital to which she might have been taken.  They Emergency

Department has been in contact with the ICDC to no avail.


Such treatment constitutes cruel and unusual punishment, and  if

Sister Jackie is not moved to an emergency room immediately and

suffers any negative medical consequences as a result I will hold

Michael Croft Enterprises, operator of ICDC and in particular Warden

Barbara Walrath and Medical Director Howard C. McMahon personally responsible.


Those supporting Jackie Hudson must have direct access to her and her

physicians so they know her whereabouts, her condition and her

treatment.  These people include: Sue Ablao, Sr. Jackie’s housemate at

Ground Zero Center for Nonviolent Action, Poulsbo, WA; Frank Hudson,

Sr. Jackie’s brother; Sister Nathalie Meyer O.P., provincial of the

Dominican Sisters of Grand Rapids, Sr. Jackie’s religious order; and

Brad Henry, Jackie's attorney.


Send an email to (or call) any news media contacts you have, or even

if you don't have any you email the newsroom (look them up in the

contacts section of that newspaper's Website).


I understand that the Koinonia Partners community in Americus,

Georgia, is planning a vigil at the prison tomorrow.


As I stay focused on dear Jackie's immediate needs I find myself also

focusing on a much broader issue.  Here is a person with so much

support from so many wonderful people.  And yet, there is a huge

percentage of the U.S. prison population (with the largest

incarceration rate in the world) for whom there is no support.  What

becomes of these forgotten prisoners when they become ill???  We will

take up that issue once we get Jackie taken care of!!!


One last thing before I close; an excerpt from something by Liz

McAllister and Chrissy Nesbitt of the Jonah House community that I

find quite pertinent today:


"It is Memorial Day as we write. Meaning no disrespect, but on this

"war heroes' weekend", isn't it time to also honor those who have

"fallen" in a different battle - against the slaughtering wars?   It

often takes a different kind of moral and, yes, even physical courage

to resist a war and/or a weapons system that you believe is a crime,

when all your family, friends, teachers and the vast American majority

support them. But what about the Sr. Jackie Hudsons who don't want to

kill people, who don’t believe it is right to build more and more

weapons of mass destruction? They're an odd breed who count among

their number such as Muhammad Ali, Mahatma Gandhi, Sergeant York,

David Hockney, three US weapon-refusing combat medics who won the

medal of honor. What kind of guts does it take for war objectors,

whether they're Quakers, Jehovah's Witnesses, Mennonites or Roman

Catholic, who simply don't want to kill? On this Memorial Day, it

might be a time to think about the outcasts who refuse to take life.

Should Sr. Jackie Hudson be required to give her life in a jail that

displays absolutely no respect for life? Is this what the U.S. is about?"


That's all for now.  In between these emails I am regularly updating

the Disarm Now Plowshares Blog as I hear of anything that you should

know.  Please check in at the top of the home page occasionally for

updates.   And -  Please forward this email far and wide.


Thanks to all who have offered to help in so many ways.  As bad as

this all is, Jackie is surrounded by such a wonderful, loving

community, and I can imagine that this knowledge is deeply embedded in

Jackie's heart and mind, and that it is a great comfort to her.




Leonard Eiger

Puget Sound Nuclear Weapon Free Zone  (Coordinator)

Ground Zero Center for Nonviolent Action (Media & Outreach)

Disarm Now Plowshares (Media & Outreach)





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