Photo by myself in Union Square.
A protest was held in Union Square, Tuesday evening in memory of Kalief Browder, a young man who endured three years imprisonment at Riker's Island without having been convicted of any crime.
Kalief spent 400 days in solitary confinement and multiple beatings from prison guards. Kalief was only 16 when he entered the jail, which houses adults. Released in 2013, he committed suicide earlier this month.
Known here simply as 'Rikers', the prison is located in the Bronx and has a long, terrible history of violence and abuse. From many published accounts, Rikers is in dire need of reform. Tuesday's protest is one of a series of events. A march to shut down the prison is scheduled for June 27.
I was very moved by the protest. The sincerity of these strangers for a New Yorker they never knew was touching, and I could not fathom how much senseless pain this young man suffered.
For an article about Kalief in the New Yorker, click here.
For an article in the NY Daily News, click here.
Related posts: Occupy Town Square, in Tompkins Square Park, Women in Black, Against War, and En Route to a Peaceful Protest, Downtown.