FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Saturday, April 18, 2020
National Rainbow PUSH Criminal Justice Reform Initiative launched Regarding Inmates and COVID-19
Chicago, Il: Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr., founder and president of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, Rev. Dr. Frederick D. Haynes, III, senior pastor of the Friendship Baptist Church in Dallas, TX, other ministers and lawyers are holding an 11 a.m. (CST) teleconference call Saturday, April 18, 2020, to announce the launching of a nationwide Criminal Justice Reform initiative seeking the release of groups of inmates who are prey to COVID-19.
The Call-in number is: 234.203.2766#
Pass Code: 138.007.693#
Rev. Jackson will discuss the historic and unprecedented national coalition led by Rev. Haynes who will give updates on pending litigation in Dallas and other nationwide efforts to follow in ten major cities throughout the nation concerning lawsuits filed by inmates seeking release because they are vulnerable to contracting the novel coronavirus.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, inmates and detainees in prisons and jails across the country along with correctional officers and jail staff, have contracted the coronavirus and are unable to adhere to the federal guidance of social distancing, wearing of face coverings or widespread testing.
The national coalition is demanding the release of pretrial detainees and other low-risk non-violent offenders awaiting trial or serving minor sentences.
“In at least three states, Maryland, Alabama and Florida, there has been at least one inmate death from this virus. The response to address this concern by state governors has been inconsistent or simply to maintain the status quo,” said Rev. Dr. S. Todd Yeary, senior vice president, Rainbow PUSH Coalition.
Others on the teleconference call will include Attorney CK Hoffler, Chair of the Board of Rainbow PUSH Coalition/President-Elect of the National Bar Association, Atlanta, GA and Dr. Leon McDougle, president-elect of the National Medical Association, Columbus.
Rainbow PUSH Coalition is a multi-racial, multi-issue, progressive, international organization that was formed in December 1996 by the Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. through merging of two organizations he founded Operation PUSH People United to Serve Humanity (estab. 1971) and the Rainbow Coalition (estab. 1984). With headquarters in Chicago and offices in Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, New York and Oakland, the organization works to make the American Dream a reality for all citizens while advocating for peace and justice around the world. RPC is dedicated to improving the lives of all people by serving as a voice for the voiceless. Its mission is to protect, defend and gain civil rights by leveling the economic and educational playing fields while promoting peace and justice around the world.