Two women, one from Mercer County and one from Ocean County, showed up at the Monmouth County Correctional Institution this morning to protest hunger striking Phoenix Feeley’s incarceration and anti-toplessness laws. They kept their tops on.
Sue Vliet, of Toms River, identified herself as an admin of One Million Vaginas, a feminist organization dedicated to empowering women to take their vagina’s back from invasive conservative politicians, was one of the two protestors. Her sign said, “STOP THE DOUBLE STANDARD. FREE OUR BREASTS.” Vliet said she was protesting the “double standard and draconian laws” that allow men that to bare their chests in public, but not women.
Sherwood said she wasn’t raising money to pay Feeley’s $816 fine, which would end the incarceration, as a matter of principle. Sherwood and Vliet both said they were not protesting topless and risking arrest themselves, because their protest was not about going topless.
Cynthia Scott, spokeswoman for the Monmouth County Sheriff’s Office, was on hand to dispute Feeley’s claims made during her hearing before Spring Lake Municipal Judge George Pappas on Thursday that she was being mistreated in the jail.
“Inmate Feeley’s comments at her hearing regarding the correctional facility were false accusations,” Scott said, “She is not being mistreated at the Monmouth County Correctional Institution. The correctional and medical staff are taking the appropriate steps to ensure her health, safety and well being. Inmate Feeley is being offered three meals per day, in addition to organic supplements, all of which she has refused. The food at the Monmouth County Correctional Institution is designed and approved by a licensed dietician every thirty days.”
Scott said Feeley has been housed in the jail’s infirmary for her entire incarceration to date, under constant supervision, and has not been “naked in her jail cell” as Feeley claimed in her hearing.
Scott said Feeley has not eaten since her incarceration, but is drinking water. “She is healthy. Her vitals are being checked and she is very healthy.”