We demand justice, healing, and
community safety for all DC Community Members!
In addition to these human rights violations, the cost of CCB — not just to utilize and run this facility, but also the cost to our communities’ psychological well-being — is exorbitant. When a person is detained at CCB they are handled by four law enforcement agencies as opposed to simply DC Metropolitan Police Department (DCMPD). This is a huge cost to taxpayers and an incredibly traumatizing experience for detainees who are not even charged. We can find better use of those taxpayer dollars, such as investing in community organizations focusing on harm reduction and addressing the root causes of crime.
The proper channels have been exhausted and clearly these issues have not been addressed adequately. We do not believe CCB can be rehabilitated, therefore it should cease to exist. We are confident that we, as a community, can find a humane way to handle this issue without resorting to taking away a person’s dignity and ruining their livelihood. It is time to close CCB!
In partnership with community organizers, advocates, and activists, Who Speaks For Me? (WSFM) has built a National Coalition to close Central Cell Block (Close CCB) due to the inhumane housing and treatment of people.
The horrible conditions of CCB are comparable to jails and prisons in some developing countries, and is a human rights violation. CCB has no place in our government or communities. While the majority of people impacted by these terrible conditions of CCB are from DC, anyone in the world can be detained there if arrested in the Nation’s Capital, making this a local, national, and international issue. CCB needs to be condemned and permanently closed immediately.
There have been several ongoing reports of incidents that compromise the safety, health, and dignity of individuals that are arrested and detained at CCB including:
- Massive roach infestations, recounted by survivors of CCB who tell horror stories of roaches crawling in their ears and their bologna sandwiches.
- Dietary needs and/or restrictions of detainees are neglected and malnourishment is promoted–only being fed bologna sandwiches throughout the day.
- No access to critical hygiene items such hand soap, toothpaste, toothbrushes, increasing the chances of spreading communicable diseases like COVID-19
- Physical injury, including burns on the bodies of detainees during the Summer, caused by rusted metal bunks that have no mattresses.
- Detainees must request menstrual products and toilet paper, in which they are then given a roll, instructed to remove what they need, and give it back to the officer.
- Women’s right to privacy while using the toilet is often denied by male officers.
- Individuals are forced to choose between receiving medical treatment or being seen by a judge as soon as possible, if they are in need of medical treatment or medication. Thus extending their stay at the facility, as they will not be on the docket for the next day’s presentation in DC Superior Court’s C-10.