Prisoner advocacy groups are trying to organize a national protest following the April riot at the Lee Correctional Institution in Bishopville.
The groups Jailhouse Lawyers Speak and the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee (IWOC) are calling for a 20-day strike seeking better conditions, according to a statement from Jailhouse Lawyers Speak.
The State newspaper first reported the move.
IWOC’s statement said seven inmates lost their lives during the uprising which could have been avoided if the prison was not overcrowded. The statement hoped the nationwide strike could serve as a wake-up call.
“Prisons in America are a war zone. Every day prisoners are harmed due to conditions of confinement. For some of us, it’s as if we are already dead. So what do we have to lose?” the statement said.
The group is encouraging prisoners to participate in work strikes, sit-ins, boycotts and hunger strikes from Aug. 21 until Sept. 9, according to the statement.
IWOC is a prisoner-led section of the Industrial Workers of the World. The group organizes to end what it calls “prison slavery.”