by Laura Finkler
The Economic Justice Committee (EJC) showed “What Happened to Dujuan Armstrong?” a film by Lucas Guilkey, at one of the Yom Kippur afternoon workshops. The film covers the tragic death of a Santa Rita inmate, the father of two young children, in June of 2018, at the hands of Sheriff Ahern’s deputies, and what has been essentially a coverup of the details of his murder. Mr. Armstrong’s family was not told about his death until late the next day, his mother, Barbara Doss, was not asked to identify him, and the family was not given his possessions until months afterwards. They still have not been shown the videos taken at the time of his death.
Mr. Armstrong helped his mother financially and she is now having to find additional income to support herself and to purchase a headstone for Dujuan. Mr. Guilkey is donating half of the fee for showing the film to Ms. Doss, and participants at the workshop also pledged to donate money to her. After the film, we had a group discussion to share our reactions with each other. If you wish to donate to Ms. Doss, please click on this link: https://www.gofundme.com/f/justice-for-dujuan.
The EJC is working currently on many issues related to the inhumane conditions at Alameda County’s Santa Rita Jail. Thirty-five people have died in custody since 2014 through neglect, abuse and suicide. Please see the accompanying article detailing another health issue we are working on as well, immediate restoration of Medi-Cal benefits when people are released.
The EJC is hoping to have another showing of this important film that will be available to the entire congregation. Contact EJC Chair, Karen Rachels, firstname.lastname@example.org, if you have questions or comments.