Black August is Ending, but These Black Political Prisoners Still Need Your Support

Movement for Black Lives
5 min readAug 31, 2022


Join us in support of political prisoners as we close out Black August. The reality of incarceration is horrific for our comrades, but you can help sustain them and support their fight for freedom.

Please support current and formerly incarcerated political prisoners below:

Ruchell Magee

Ruchell “Cinque” Magee is the longest-held political prisoner in the United States. Ruchell was unjustly captured in 1963 on trumped-up charges related to a marijuana deal. He is now 83 years old, forced to suffer mentally and physically due to the poor conditions inside California’s prison camps. As the COVID-19 crisis rages on, Ruchell needs your support and action so that he can be released, spend time with his loved ones, and better his community. After 59 years of injustice, enough is enough. Free Ruchell Magee now! Sign the petition demanding Governor Newsom release Ruchell. Please donate here to support the Coalition to Free Ruchell Magee.

Ashley Diamond

Ashley Diamond is FREE! Ashley Diamond is a Black trans woman and prisoners’ rights activist. She made national headlines in 2016 for her landmark victory against the Georgia Department of Corrections. After being re-imprisoned for over a year, she was finally released from prison in early August and is suing the Georgia DOC again for refusing to protect her from sexual assault or provide her with adequate medical care. Ashley is free but adjusting to life after the trauma of incarceration, especially as a trans woman, is difficult. She needs your support to help sustain her as she seeks the medical care she needs and continues her fight against the system that abused her. Donate here and here to support Ashley in her freedom!

Veronza Bowers

Veronza Bowers Jr. is a former Black Panther Party member framed for the murder of a U.S. Park Ranger. He is being unjustly and arguably illegally held past his 30-year mandatory release date, making him one of the longest-held political prisoners in U.S. history. Despite letters of support from prominent attorneys, former high-ranking representatives of regional commissions, prison officials, and a member of the U.S. Congress, Veronza has continually been denied release due to intervention by the U.S. Parole Commission. A recent decision by the regional federal parole commission to grant his release was overturned by the National Commission. A group of family, friends, and supporters are trying to raise money to pay the legal bills necessary to get Veronza the justice he deserves. Donate to Veronza Bowers, Jr. Legal Defense Fund via Paypal using the following email address:

Reverend Joy Powell

Rev. Joy is a pastor and an activist against police brutality, violence, and oppression in her community. That work made her a target for the Rochester police, leading to false charges against her. After a flagrantly corrupt trial process, Rev. Joy is facing a lifetime in prison. As she seeks an appeal to overturn this cruel sentence, donate to help sustain and support her during her incarceration.

Josh Williams

Josh Williams is the only remaining political prisoner from the Ferguson/St. Louis uprisings. He was an on-the-ground activist and protester who helped lead one of the largest movements against police violence in modern history. A few months after his 19th birthday, he was convicted and sentenced to a crime with almost no evidence. His unjust and harsh sentence was an attempt to intimidate the movement and make an example out of him. Josh has continued to speak truth to power and use his voice to unify communities against oppression. Donate to sustain Josh in prison through Jpay (instructions found here). Keep up to date on Josh’s status and ways you can help by signing up here.

Comrade Alyssa

Alyssa is a Black trans woman who has been incarcerated in Maryland for more than a decade. She’s a writer and an avid reader, with books serving as her only company while she is regularly faced with solitary confinement, especially during the pandemic. Her pen pal and friend has become her advocate outside of prison, fundraising for Alyssa to receive more books and other support she needs. Donate to support this fund now, and provide Alyssa with what is needed to sustain her during her incarceration.

Sundiata Acoli

Sundiata is FREE! In May the New Jersey Supreme Court overturned the parole board’s decision to deny Sundiata’s petition for release, and he was finally reunited with his family at home after more than 49 years in prison. He’s with his loved ones and slowly adjusting to reentry and all that’s changed in nearly 50 years. But freedom from incarceration does not mean the struggle is over. The campaign for Sundiata is raising money to help support him and make sure he is able to enjoy this next chapter of his life as a free man. Donate here to help give Sundiata the support and financial stability to live the life he deserves.

“It is our duty to fight for our freedom. It is our duty to win. We must love and support one another. We have nothing to lose but our chains.” — Assata Shakur

Also, view other political prisoners we are supporting throughout Black August and beyond along with our comrades at the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement.



Movement for Black Lives

M4BL is a national network of organizations and individuals creating a broad political home for Black people to learn, organize, and take action.