Capital Area Against Mass Incarceration, Transgender Advocates From Across State to Rally for Justice and Safety For Eyricka King
On Monday, July 24th, Transgender advocates from New York City joined with Capital Area Against Mass Incarceration to show support for Eyricka Thompson King, a young, black transgender woman who was kept in solitary confinement, assaulted, and initially denied medical treatment by prison officials at Franklin Correctional Facility. Ms. King was temporarily transported to a facility downstate on issues related to a separate case, where she was released from solitary confinement, and has now received necessary medical care. There is now a strong possibility she will soon be sent back to Franklin Correctional Facility where she was initially abused. The Justice for Eyricka Campaign is demanding:
- An investigation be carried out regarding the injuries Ms. King sustained during her assault, and charges against any officers found to be involved.
- There be continuous monitoring of Ms. King’s medical injuries and her recovery. She must not be returned to Franklin Correctional Facility or any other facility in that hub.
Gathering at the New York State Department of Corrections building in Albany, the group was denied a meeting with officials and instructed to leave the building.
Cecilia Gentili said “As a transgender woman with a history of dealing with the correctional system, I know how hard Erycka`s situation is at this time. Transgender individuals should be housed with the populations they identify with. Transgender women should not be housed with male identified individuals. It is unaceptable that transgender women are put at risk of violence while in custody of the law enforcement officials who are supposed to keep them safe.”
Kelly Harrison, Eyricka’s chosen mother, attended Monday, and has launched a campaign to fight for Justice For Eyricka and all transgender and LGBTQ people. Her mission is to eliminate abuse against all inmates starting with Franklin Correctional Facility.
Sharron Cooks, a board member of the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund, said “I advocate for everyone’s human rights and for people even those in the prison system to be treated with dignity and respect. Everyone has a right to be safe even people who have made mistakes and have been incarcerated. Transgender individuals like Eyricka are at a heightened risk of violence being housed in male correctional facilities, and that needs to change.”
Other organizations that participated Monday included F2L, We Fight 2 Live, a New York City based group of individuals doing support work for trans and queer people of color facing time in New York. F2L is very instrumental in the Justice For Eyricka Campaign and have been working closely with her for quite some time.