[Ppnews] Day Seven: Hunger Strike Grows to Nearly 12, 000 - State Threatens Lawyers

Political Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Sun Oct 2 17:13:25 EDT 2011

3 Stories Follow

Prisoner Hunger Strike Grows to Nearly 12,000!


Numbers released by the federal receiver’s office 
show that on September 28th, nearly 12,000 
prisoners were on hunger strike, including 
California prisoners who are housed in out of 
state prisons in Arizona, Mississippi and 
Oklahoma. This historic and unprecedented number 
shows the strength and resolve of the prisoners 
to win their 5 core demands and is a serious 
challenge to the power of the California prison 
system and to the Prison Industrial Complex in general.

Prisoners are currently on strike in Pelican Bay 
State Prison, Calipatria, Centinela, Corcoran, 
Ironwood State Prison, Kern Valley State Prison, 
North Kern State Prison, and Salinas Valley State 
Prison. Throughout the last week prisoners at 
California Rehabilitation Center in Norco, 
Pleasant Valley State Prison, San Quentin as well 
as West Valley Detention Center in San Bernadino County were participating.

The receiver’s office and the CDCRÂ begin 
monitoring prisoners who have refused food for 72 
hours or for 9 consecutive meals. Representatives 
of the hunger strikers have previously stated 
that this will be a rolling strike, allowing 
prisoners to come off strike to regain strength. 
Because of this, numbers will likely fluctuate 
throughout the duration of the strike.

a short video about solitaritary confinement 
produced by the American Friends Service Committee.

State prison officials investigate 2 advocates

by Michael Montgomery

<http://t.ymlp47.com/quwaiaumbjafaeuatahy/click.php>CALIFORNIA WATCH
Founded by the Center for Investigative Reporting

October 1, Â 2011

Just days after thousands of California inmates 
renewed a hunger strike, two Bay Area attorneys 
closely involved in mediation efforts got a 
surprise: They were under investigation by the 
Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation for 
allegations of misconduct and unspecified security threats.

The attorneys – Marilyn McMahon, executive 
director of California Prison Focus, and Carol 
Strickman of Legal Services for Prisoners With 
Children – have been banned from state 
institutions until the investigation is resolved, 
according to temporary exclusion orders signed by 
Corrections Undersecretary Scott Kernan on Sept. 29.

The investigation will determine whether the 
attorneys “violated the laws and policies 
governing the safe operations of institutions 
within the CDCR,” the order states.

The document does not provide details about the 
allegations. It cites a section from California Code of Regulations that reads:

"Committing an act that jeopardizes the life of a 
person, violates the security of the facility, 
constitutes a misdemeanor or a felony, or is a 
reoccurrence of previous violations shall result 
in a one-year to lifetime exclusion depending on 
the severity of the offense in question."

Corrections spokeswoman Terry Thornton confirmed 
the department had banned "some specific 
attorneys" from one facility for alleged 
misconduct. She declined further comment, citing an ongoing investigation.

The move is another indication that the 
corrections department intends to handle the 
current protest differently from an earlier 
hunger strike, which ended July 20 after 
officials agreed to some concessions, including a 
review of policies governing the state’s 
controversial Security Housing Units, where some 
inmates have spent decades housed alone in windowless cells.

Since then, strike leaders have accused 
corrections officials of failing to carry out their promises.

“CDCR has responded with more propaganda, lies 
and vague double-talk of promises of change in 
time," reads a statement from the leaders posted 
on an advocacy website. The inmates vowed to 
continue the protest indefinitely, “until actual changes are implemented.”

But corrections officials say they’ve kept their 
commitments and claim the protests are the work of dangerous gang leaders.

“Unlike in the first instance where we certainly 
evaluated their concerns and thought there was 
some merit to it, this instance appears to be 
more manipulative, and it certainly has the 
possibility of being a real disruption to the 
Department of Corrections and the security of its 
staff and inmates,” Kernan said.

A memo signed by Kernan and distributed to 
inmates Sept. 29 warned the department was 
treating the new hunger strike as a “mass 
disturbance” and said any prisoner who joined the 
protest would be subject to disciplinary action.

General-population inmates identified as strike 
leaders will be locked in special segregation 
units normally used as punishment for major rules 
violations, according to the memo.

Strickman and McMahon have been involved in 
extensive discussions with corrections officials, 
including Kernan, and leaders of the strike, who 
are housed in Pelican Bay State Prison’s Security Housing Unit.

Neither attorney was available for comment.

Dorsey Nunn, executive director of Legal Services 
for Prisoners With Children, condemned the 
sanctions against the attorneys and said he 
expected the department would place similar 
restrictions on other advocates in order to 
further isolate leaders of the hunger strike.

“They’re trying to move us out of the way,” he said.

Nearly 3,400 inmates at six prisons have refused 
state-issued meals for three consecutive days, 
according to the most recent data from the corrections department.

Written Statement from the Men at Calipatria 
State Prison ASU segregation unit, dated 9/20/2011

“Greetings to you and all. We are writing this 
letter in regards of the hunger strike happening on 9/26/11.

This is gonna be our second time participating in 
the Hunger Strike and that goes for the majority of the men here in ASU.

We all have experienced the dread of Calipatria’s 
misconduct in one way or another. We have been 
wrongfully validated as a prison gang 
‘associate’. The evidence used against us is 
insufficient and untrue which majority of us are experiencing this.

We are all supporting Pelican Bay and their 5 
core demands, but we also have issues with this 
administration and all their misconduct. There’s 
people here who have been waiting to get 
transferred to Pelican Bay SHU for 3-4 years and 
during this wait we aren’t being allowed what we 
have coming as “SHU status inmates” such as our T.V.’s or Radios.

Roughly, 80% of us back here in ASU are validated 
inmates and this administration’s only response 
is to “appeal it.” We aren’t even given a fair 
chance to even “appeal it” because the 
information used against us is considered 
“confidential” and CDCR doesn’t allow us to confront our accusers.

Its being estimated that the number of 
participation in round 2 of the hunger strike is 
to be in the 100’s and that’s just counting the men in ASU here.

We all stand strong together and we all strive 
for the rights of not only Pelican Bay and 

Our protest is a “peaceful solid food hunger 
strike” and our demands coincide with the 5 core 
demands of Pelican Bay with the addition of us 
being given our appliance (T.V. or Radio) and our P.I.A. soft shoes.

During the last hunger strike we were denied our 
liquids which we had a right to have (such as 
milk, juice, coffee packs, etc
) up to 3 times a day.

We are committed to take it as far as we can go 
and some of us men in ASU are willing to die if 
we have too to stop our inhumane conditions we are experiencing.

We all would like to remain anonymous but with 
this letter, we hope all turns out for the best 
and we thank you for your support and time.”

Freedom Archives
522 Valencia Street
San Francisco, CA 94110

415 863-9977

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