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ACLU Comment on Chelsea Manning Prison ‘Contraband’ Guilty Verdict

Manning Punished for Possessing Expired Toothpaste and LGBT Reading Material

NEW YORK - A closed disciplinary board at the military correctional facility at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, last night found Chelsea Manning guilty of four charges, including possessing prohibited material and disrespecting a prison officer.

Manning was punished with a 21-day restriction on her activities including gym, library, and time outdoors. This conviction can be cited in future hearings concerning parole or clemency, and it is expected to delay her transition from medium security to minimum security custody status by years.

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The following comment can be attributed to Chase Strangio, attorney in the American Civil Liberties Union’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and HIV Project, who represents Manning in her federal case:

“Not only does this punishment mean the immediate loss of library and recreation for Chelsea, but she also will carry these infractions through her parole and clemency process and will be held longer in the more restrictive custody where she is now incarcerated. No one should have to face the lingering threat of solitary confinement for reading and writing about the conditions we encounter in the world. Chelsea's voice is critical to our public discourse about government accountability and trans justice, and we can only preserve it if we stay vigilant in our advocacy on her behalf.”

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The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) conserves America's original civic values working in courts, legislatures and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in the United States by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

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