I was the head of my family. I not only cared for my wife and children but also my mother and younger siblings. The conditions of HRMCC have caused a painful life for both me and my family for the last nine years.
Because of the ‘privilege’ of only a few 6 minute calls per week and the little contact by way of visits, communication between me, my wife and my children completely collapsed. In November 2010, we were forced to divorce.
The HRMCC is designed to strip everything from you; family, friends, all loved ones; everything you know. Although Sydney is only 2 hours away, it feels as though you are completely and utterly cut off from the outside world.
Overall, I feel very depressed with how things have happened and the oppressive system forced upon me at HRMCC, add to that the injustices many officers perpetrate.
Having my rights taken away from me and basically not being able to move or look sideways without being constantly watched and analyzed; I feel worse than a caged animal with no privacy or rights. Add to that the frequent cell searches, strip searches-which are humiliating and controlling of every item I have.
Trying to use the ‘system’ to voice injustices for various things has proven a farce. Complaint forms go ‘missing’ or into an abyss with no return. So being treated unjustly at HRMCC-be it humiliation, abuse and so on there is no way to combat it. The Ombudsman can’t do anything and the supposed ‘system’ put in place for preservation of our rights and dignity is non-existent, manipulated and full of lies and corruption. This causes so much sadness and despair because when I try to retain my honour and stand up for my right as a human being, all I find is this maze designed to ultimately serve and protect the interests of the perpetrators. This is evident in the numerous ‘Inmate Complaint and Request Forms’ I’ve submitted.
In January 2011 I was punished by being“regressed” in the Behavioral Management Program and one of the reasons was for ‘complaining.’ I see around me many inmates who over the years have tried to take the same path i.e. follow procedure in filling complaints on injustices on their human rights but have fallen away. Some have given up and on numerous occasions tried to commit suicide. Simpson succeeded and died in 2003. Others end up on Methadone and other hard pharmaceutical drugs and are living like walking zombies. One inmate even cut his finger off in protest and tried to send it to the courts.
Seeing and living through this constantly has been the worst years of my life. Often in my cell I drift off into long day dreams, I imagine myself in an argument with an officer (that had earlier antagonized or taunted me) which turns into imaginary violent revengeful attacks where I viciously am doing horrible things to him.
Going through lockdowns adds to the distress. When I try to lift myself up and start and keep a routine of physical exercise or activity outside my cell that quickly disappears because of another lockdown. I feel there’s absolutely nothing to look forward to, no goals or ambition, just hopelessness and despair. I often force myself to just sleep just to not have to face the days.
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