Please join us, Thursday April 21st, 7pm sharp @ the Red and Black Cafe, 400 SE 12th Ave, for an evening of amazing, diverse music and Stand in Solidarity with survivors of assault in the Olympia City Jail!
On November 13, 2007, 39 women were arrested during a peaceful demonstration against the war in Iraq. When taken to the jail, many were forced to remove clothing to a point that exposed their breasts, even though the circumstances of their arrest did not warrant probable cause for strip search.
They were told that they would not be allowed to put their clothes back on after stripping. Neither did they receive prison wear or blankets to cover themselves and were left under the watch of male officers in the jail’s Sally port, which is unheated.
Jail policy firmly states that prisoners must be allowed to keep pants, skirts, shirts, dresses, socks and undergarments. Other articles of clothing, such as jackets, jewelry and shoes may be held by jail staff until the prisoner’s release. The city, against their own policies, destroyed the jail’s video tape of that night and maintains that they are completely innocent of any crime. Three of the women filed suit against the city.
In any other setting, holding power over people with the threat of violence while demanding that they remove their clothing is clearly seen as a sexual assault. Why would we tolerate it in this setting?