#SurvivedAndPunished: Survivor Defense as Abolitionist Praxis is a collection of tools, tips, lessons and resources developed through our own experiences. It is also an effort to document and reflect on our own movement work. It is important for us to document especially because our organizing work has been led by Black women, women of color, immigrants and queer/trans people, who are so often erased from history. We hope to preserve some of these histories, build solidarity, and share hope as we continue our collective struggle.
May 22, 2017
The #FreeBresha campaign is infuriated that 15-year-old domestic violence survivor, Bresha Meadows, has been forced by Ohio prosecutors to submit to a plea deal that would keep her in juvenile detention for a full year (which includes 10 months of time served) and an additional 6 months of incarceration in a “treatment facility.” Though an earlier version of the plea deal would have released Bresha to the “treatment facility” today, the final plea deal has increased Bresha’s time in juvenile detention for another two months. Prosecuting Bresha, including the pointless punitivity of adding time in juvenile detention, should be condemned by all who care about the well-being of children.
Bresha’s move from juvenile detention to the “treatment facility” is scheduled for July 30th. Once transferred, this facility has the power to determine whether they will confine Bresha beyond the 6 months stated in the plea deal…
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May 8, 2017
15-year-old domestic violence survivor, Bresha Meadows, was offered a plea deal at a pretrial hearing this morning at the Trumbull County Juvenile Court in Ohio. While the details of the proposed deal have not been finalized, our understanding of the terms is that Bresha will be under state control for a total of 18 months. This includes 9 months she has already spent behind bars and an additional 9 months of incarceration in a “treatment facility.” Bresha’s attorney hopes Bresha will be transferred from juvenile detention to the treatment center by May 22nd at the latest. A pre-trial hearing is scheduled for May 22nd. Bresha’s record, as it relates to this case, would be sealed on her eighteenth birthday.
Without a plea deal, Bresha would face an aggravated murder charge for defending herself and her mother against the unrelenting abuse of her father, Jonathan Meadows. A conviction…
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#FreeBresha DAYS OF ACTION: OCT 5 & 6
Bresha has an important court hearing on Thursday, Oct 6th when the prosecutor will determine if Bresha will be prosecuted for a crime (possibly charged as an adult) instead of given the support & safety that she needs.
We take action in solidarity with Bresha and demand that she is returned home to her family and that all charges against her are dropped. We call on #SayHerName / #BlackLivesMatter supporters, victim advocates, feminists, racial justice activists, young people, and people of faith to take action in solidarity with Bresha and all survivors of domestic & sexual violence who are criminalized for surviving.
WAYS TO PARTICIPATE (Download as PDF):
- TAKE DIRECT ACTION! On Oct 5th & 6th, organize a march & rally, a speak out, a vigil, a flash mob dance party, a concert, a block party, or a fundraiser. Use media! Create zines, short videos, postcards, music, and poetry.
- DONATE to the fund to support Bresha Meadows’ freedom:https://www.gofundme.com/BreshaM
- SIGN the petition to demand that Trumbull County Prosecutor, Dennis Watkins, drop the charges against Bresha and free her now:bit.ly/FreeBreshaNow
- WRITE letters of encouragement and support to Bresha and send to: Bresha Meadows, c/o Ian N. Friedman, Esq., Friedman & Nemecek, L.L.C., The IMG Center, 1360 E. 9th Street, Suite 650, Cleveland, Ohio 44114
- JOIN the “Open Letter to Dennis Watkins” project. Send us an open letter to Prosecutor Dennis Watkins who has the discretion to decide to drop charges against Bresha. https://freebresha.wordpress.com/open-letters/
- EDUCATE communities about the criminalization of black girls and survivors of domestic violence! Organize discussions and workshops about domestic and sexual violence, explore community strategies for safety and support, resist the criminalization of our communities.
* #FreeBresha curriculum template
* fact sheet on domestic violence and the criminalization of girls
* educational tools at survivedandpunished.org and No Selves to Defend
- ENDORSE the call to free Bresha Meadows. Urge your campus, organization, union, faith community, or collective to endorse the statement posted by Love & Protect: http://loveandprotect.org/bresha-meadows/
- CONNECT WITH FAITH COMMUNITIES. If you are part of a faith community, join community prayer sessions for Bresha’s freedom and mobilize your community. More here:https://freebresha.wordpress.com/faith/
- SPREAD THE WORD with friends, families, communities, co-workers, and via social media. Write letters to the editor to your local news media. Blog, tweet, and spread the word on social media. #FreeBresha
The Bresha Meadows Freedom Campaign urges supporters to sign this petition addressed to Trumbull County Prosecutor, Dennis Watkins, demanding that he free Bresha Meadows and drop all charges against her. Brief excerpt from the petition:
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Source: Aug 19: #FreeBresha Twitter Chat
(Image: Kara Rodriguez )
We write this post for Bresha Meadows, on this, her 15th birthday. As Black and Brown organizers, many of whom have experienced violence in our own lives, it pains us that Bresha will spend this day incarcerated, rather than celebrating her life at home with her family. On July 28, acting in her own defense, and in defense of her mother, Bresha allegedly took the life of her father, Jonathan Meadows.
Jonathan Meadows was killed with his own gun — a firearm he is said to have repeatedly pointed at his own family, throughout the years of abuse they suffered. It is well documented that abusers with a history of violence are five times more likely to subsequently murder an intimate partner if there is a firearm in the home. Brandi, Bresha’s mother, was trapped in a cycle of violence, that both she and Bresha had…
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