Difficult meeting of Martha “with PAST” – …for the FUTURE?

December was promising to be very emotional for Martha.
There were supposed to be two Christmas meetings: 1. Alternatives to Violence Project Chritmas Dinner (it was held without Martha’s participation) and 2. Annual dinner for “lifers” with their closest ones.
Additionally Martha made some changes to her visitors list.
Temporarily (until end of January 2019) she removed three people from the list to make place for new 3 people, who asked for possibility to meet Martha.
First is Marcin Gromiec (we have published the relations from the meeting with Martha and the “plight before and after”)
Next two people are Martha’s former friends: Anna and Katarzyna.
Martha was wondering if she should consent to their visit.
She wondered if she is ready.
Many years had passed… But wounds remain…
After consulting the family, Martha agreed to those visits.

Everyone is making mistakes, more or less painful.
But if someone reaches with initiative – then everyone deserves a chance…

On Saturday, January 5, 2019, at 3 p.m., there was a meeting after many years.
Martha was visited by her old friend – Anna (earlier Martha received a letter from Anna).
It was a difficult meeting.
It began with welcome and with words “I’m sorry” from the mouth of old friend.
Those words, “I’m sorry”, fell about three times.
It was an honest talk. Face to face…
Calm exchange of views, and talking about everything that hurt before and still hurts.
Martha was calm during the talk.
She saw, that it is hard for an old friend.
It wasn’t easy for Martha also.
Maybe this wasn’t making it easy talk for each other, but it’s important, that such meeting and such talk even happened.
… it will be easier for everyone…
… and we will see what will happen next…

We thank for that meeting…
“No one is without a sin”, but the worst thing is holding to wrong behavior.
We thank for “breaking”,  for coming, for overcoming own fears.
Such action needed much strength.
We notice that and we appreciate.
Maybe some role had Martha’s old friend’s family in this…
Maybe a change happened…
It’s possible, that earlier advice of the family to not step forward, were replaced by advice like “It shouldn’t be this way”…
Maybe it’s an example, that you need only one person to break something, bu to fix it – many people are needed…

Of course one visit will not wipe out many things and many years…
Through these years Martha’s true friends could do very much…
…and they are real support for Martha…
But that’s a start…
And a pattern in some way…
There are many, many more people who should come…
Maybe it’s not about coming itself, but about an appropriate action…
…or a change of previous actions…
…or starting to act at all, when one stood on the sidelines…

Will you change in time?
Will you make it to tell that to Martha?
Will you make it to visit Martha while she’s still in Ireland?
How many years do you need?…

“It went without tears … We did not wish for a Merry Christmas, because it’s a bit out of place …” – Annual dinner in prison for “lifers” – Marta is still discriminated against

On Wednesday, December 12, at the Dochas Center prison, an annual meeting was held for women serving life sentences (“lifers”).
For each woman imprisoned in such cases, it was an opportunity to meet the three closest people. A common dinner, a longer conversation, a nice time.
Until three hours of sight. From 13 to 16.

At several tables there was a nice and cordial atmosphere.
The friends of Krysia, Mariusz and Rafał came to meet with Marta this year.
Friends who live in Ireland.
Everyone, including Marta, are well dressed.
Unfortunately, nobody from the family came from Poland.
That was agreed with Marta.

What was different from last year?
Better food.
And Mrs. Governor Mary O’Connor exceptionally kind.
(The same Mrs. Governor, who broke the 4 Sunday prisoners 3 days earlier without spending a pass on the Altenatives to the Violence Project Christmas Dinner)
Mrs. Governor was very nice.
She sat down at each table for a moment and talked to everyone for a moment.

Marta thanked Mrs. Governor Mary O’Connor for the very good preparation of a special dinner and for the fact that she could have been at this special dinner.

And what has not changed?
… Discrimination of Marta …
Everyone could give presents to their loved ones …
Everyone … just not Marta …
Friends did not expect anything from Marta.
But this situation is unpleasant for Marta herself.
She likes to share with others, she likes to give gifts to others …
Only after a symbolic little thing for friends …
Unfortunately…

The meeting was very briefly commented by one of the participants, one of Marta’s friends – Mariusz (in Polish language):

“I am with you with all my heart, I love everyone, I miss you …” – wishes from Marta

Marta really wanted to get an extra phone today, but it failed.
So she called her mother with wishes.
Later she made a phone call to her sister.
Unfortunately, she could not make any additional phone anymore.
She really wanted to call her friends.
She asked for the best wishes from her.
For everyone.
But especially for her closest friends and their families:
for Kasia, for Mariusz, for Rafał, for Krysia, for Tomasz.
She is with everyone.
Thoughts about everyone.
She imagine everyone sitting with their families at Christmas Eve tables.

“I am with you with all my heart.
I love everyone.
I miss you.
Thank you for your support.
I wish you true love and warmth.
And health, because health is the most important. ”

And Marta herself:
it’s a holiday today:
the block is closed earlier.
Candy is waiting for Marta, waiting for coffee and popcorn.
Yesterday, Marta sewed her pants for the first time.
Denim jeans.
Tomorrow will shorten them and walk in them …

Marta sends 35 postcards with Christmas wishes

Marta asked one of her friends to bring her Christmas postcards in a set with envelopes.
A friend fulfilled this request.

Marta, therefore, sent Christmas wishes.
35 postcards.
Up to thirty-five people with their families.
She forwarded all correspondence to be sent on Wednesday, December 12th.
When will the prison service pass them on?
Will the postcards arrive on time?

We are very happy that Marta has a positive attitude.
She wishes others what next year will not have her or her immediate family:
Happy and Merry Christmas

For now, we do not complete the Correspondence bookmark for this information about Marta’s postcards.
We give time to get these postcards to all recipients.
Let Marta’s memory be an extra surprise at this special time.

“Dochas Centre is the most dangerous Irish prison for staff” – archive article on dublinlive.ie

Dochas Centre is the most dangerous Irish prison for staff

This Dublin prison is the most DANGEROUS

The facility recorded the highest number of assaults by prisoners on prison staff

Source: www.dublinlive.ie/news/dublin-news/dochas-centre-most-dangerous-irish-13344315

Alternatives to Violence Project Chritmas Dinner without women of Dochas Centre – Why?

Some events are exceptionally difficult to understand for us.
We don’t understand the unexpected lack of information from Mrs Governor to the Prison Service, regarding passes for four women from Dochas Centre.
Was this a change of decision or an oversight?
We probably should ask Mrs Governor Mary O’Connor herself.
Why?
Can you really deal with people like that?
Maybe we don’t understand something?

Do you understand? Explain:

Why Mrs Governor Mary O’Connor didn’t issue a disposition in the matter of appointed Christmas Dinner for four women of Dochas Centre?

Why do you think this happened? Select and vote (you can chose one option or enter your own, short)
1 vote · 1 answer
Vote

Was there any word of apology or explanation on the part of Mrs Governor on Monday, December 10?
What for?
Nothing.
Like if nothing happened on Sunday.
Can one feel good about this?

Such situations are exceptionally unpleasant for others in the first moment.
We are very glad, that Martha is already able to cope with that.

Martha remains human and she acts like a human, even if everyone around forgets that they are humans.
Neither Martha, nor her family expect anything good of Ireland.
They don’t expect because they don’t want to be disappointed, but sometimes goodness comes…
Because there is something good in everyone…
We patiently wait until Martha’s goodness will break Irish persistence…

This was supposed to be extraordinary Sunday – Did Mrs Governor of Dochas Centre prison forget?

This was supposed to be extraordinary Sunday. December 9, 2018.
Four inmates of Dochas Centre prison were preparing for a special dinner.
They were supposed to be honored and awarded for leading the courses and classes learning how to prevent violence.
They were supposed to walk with their school teachers through the gate. Through a tiny roundabout. To the Mountjoy Prison. For a  combined Christmas dinner. AVP (Alternatives to Violence Project) Christmas Dinner. Christmas dinner for facilitators. Combined with facilitator from the men’s prison. During the dinner, diplomas were supposed to be given.
This was special commendation.
The inmates could also invite someone of family or acquaintances.
A friend of Martha’s sister came to Martha.
A mum of other inmate, specially arrived via train from very far away.
Martha was very excited about this day.
She was specially preparing herself. Of the excitement she didn’t eat anything for the whole day.
Formally, she was to receive a pass.
A pass which guaranteed a walk throuhg a few meters of freedom. Because that’s the length that separates the gate of the women’s prison from men’s prison.
Few meters of sky without bars and meshes. Few steps on freedom… in a straight line…
Seems like not so much…

Everyone’s ready, everyone’s waiting… and…
…(we will not use an ugly word here)…

Irish Prison Service couldn’t let out, or rather pass for a moment, four women from Dochas Centre.
It couldn’t because…
…because Mrs Governor of Dochas Centre prison, Mrs Mary O’Connor… didn’t send an e-mail… to Irish Prison Service… with disposition…

We won’t even describe the feelings of four inmates…
The teachers were very angry and disappointed. They tried to do something about it, but they couldn’t do anything…

…Only thing left for Martha and other inmates was to ask for a visit of people who came…
…not without problems… they managed to get… 20 minutes of visit…
…Martha apologized to the sister’s friend for an hour of delay and for all the mess…

Special arrival of Martha’s friend – Kasia – two short visits

Katarzyna Błaszczyk, a friend of Martha, planned a special arrival to Ireland. She wanted to visit Martha very much.
She didn’t see her for so long.
She arrived on Friday, November 23.
She had little time. Straight from the ariport she was in a hurry to visit Martha.
After half an hour one of the officers wanted to make Kasia leave.
But courageous Polish girl didn’t let him.
She didn’t fly from Poland for this.
She informed the officer, that a visit from Poland is treated as a Special Visit.
Kasia is exceptionally outspoken, direct and firm.

And later, on Saturday, one more short visit, and return to Poland.
She couldn’t even stay for another visit, because she had her return flight to Poland.

Kasia recorded a short video with her phone. Thank yu for sharing it with us.
Tired after the travel via planes and busses Kasia runs to visit Martha…

Thank you very much for this sacrifice and specially visiting Martha.
Martha was very, very glad and happy…
Thank you.

How to explain this to Martha?…

Two verdicts don’t equal, two cases don’t equal also.
But how to explain this to Martha?

While being in prison Martha is interested in other verdicts, which are passed in Ireland.
She is interested, and she can’t understand.

She can’t understand a “string” verdict, she can’t understand the verdicts on conscious action for depriving someone of life, which were passed lately in Ireland.
The punishments for those actions can’t be compared to the verdict passed in her case.
The punishments are minimal, often symbolic…

In case of Martha there was no planning, no motive.
Martha didn’t use any violence.
She didn’t torture.
She found herself in the same situation as passenger, her life was also seriously endangered.
She had no criminal record.
She was released pending trial and…
The verdict was like if she was a serial killer.

Are those judgements in the case law?
In case of European law, the “paragraph” law, there is slight “forks”.
Here, in anglo-saxon case law (to not to say “wig law”), these are huge forks. It’s cosmic, incomprehensible spread.

How to explain this to Martha?
Martha asked her family such a question.

They didn’t know what to say.

The sister said, that others cooperated with DPP.
Martha told everything she know to the DPP but she defended her innocence.
She couldn’t plea guilty of something she didn’t do.
Could anyone plea guilty, contrary to oneself, contrary to the truth, of something one didn’t do?
To make DPP happy?
To get lower sentence?
On the other hand, Martha said definitely not enough regarding the behavior and actions of the passenger in the last moment before the accident.
But most of all, Martha answered the questions of DPP, and somehow the wasn’t to many questions about the behavior of the passenger…
This aspect of the event somehow wasn’t interesting for DPP…

Because of amount of learning Martha resigns her job at the library.

Martha has a lot of learning. She prepares herself for high school exam.
She has to read few books. Based on those books she has to answer a lot of questions.
One week, she received 60 questions based on one of the books.
Until next Tuesday she was supposed to prepare answers for every question.
The answer  for one question was to have volume of one page.
It’s easy to count, 60 pages of answers a week…

Regarding such great amount of material and learning, Martha decided to resign her job at the library.
For the last few days she was teaching 3 women, fellow inmates.
The last day she taught those women was Sunday, November 18.
Since Monday, November 19, they have been working in the library by themselves, without Martha.
Martha says, that the women were very pleased. Martha is also happy.

Martha also passed other job she had at the Dochas Centre prison:
She looked after dispensing clothes for inmates, that don’t have their own clothes.
Martha passed the task to another person.

Martha applies herself to learning very much, she is conscientious.
If she does not prepare herself properly, she feels like not going to class.
But she studies.
Sometimes she forces herself to, but she studies…