[Pnews] Oct 18th - UN Special Rapporteur on Torture to Visit California, Meet with Hunger Strike Supporters, Speak on Solitary Confinement

Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Thu Oct 17 18:55:45 EDT 2013


CORRECTED MEDIA ALERT—OCTOBER 17, 2013
**
*
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*UN Special Rapporteur on Torture to Visit California, Meet with Hunger 
Strike Supporters, Speak on Solitary Confinement *

*Press Contact:*
Prisoner Hunger Strike Solidarity Coalition

*Who:*  UN Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan Mendez, Prisoner Hunger 
Strike Solidarity Coalition
*What:* Community Conversation
*
Where/When: FRIDAY OCTOBER 18

LOS ANGELES: *
9:30 am to 11:30 am (Vigil 9 am to 9:30 am)
Immanuel Presbyterian Church
3300 Wilshire Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90010
*
BERKELEY:*
6:00pm to 8:00pm
UC Berkeley Campus
Valley Life Sciences Building, Room 2060


Oakland—In the wake of the largest prisoner hunger strike in US history, 
UN Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan Mendez will visit with supporters 
and loved ones of California prisoners and will join them for public 
conversations in Los Angeles and Berkeley.   In 2012, over 300 prisoners 
submitted a petition to Mendez, alleging that their conditions violate 
the United Nations Convention Against Torture. In response, Special 
Rapporteur Mendez has requested that the US State Department authorize 
him to visit prisons in California. That request remains pending. 
  During this past summer’s hunger strike, Juan Mendez granted 
prisoners’ request to visit California and meet with prisoners’ loved 
ones and advocates to learn more about solitary confinement in 
California, and to share his views on how solitary confinement may 
violate the international human rights obligations of the United States.


Mendez’s visit comes a week after a rare joint session of the California 
Senate and Assembly Public Safety Committees held to address demands 
made by prisoners during the hunger strike. California’s use of 
indefinite solitary confinement, and the devastating physical, mental, 
and public health impacts of the notorious practice was at the center of 
the three hour hearing, with committee chair Assembly member Tom Ammiano 
calling conditions in California’s solitary confinement cells, “beyond 
the pale.”


“Prisoners themselves, their loved ones , and their supporters have made 
it very clear: what’s happening in California prisons, the torture of 
solitary confinement, is an international issue,” said Danny Murillo of 
the Cal Berkeley-based organization, Human Rights of the Incarcerated, a 
member of the Prisoner Hunger Strike Solidarity Coalition. Murillo spent 
years being held in solitary confinement in California prisons. 
“Solitary confinement has be resolutely condemned internationally.  Now 
it is the time for clear and urgent action to dismantle the policies, 
procedures, and facilities that are destroying lives.  We are eager to 
discuss with Mr. Mendez the work we’ve been doing to end human rights 
violations in California prisons, and look forward to his visit adding 
momentum to this growing movement. “

Loved one of prisoners and leading activists against solitary 
confinement will speak along with Mendez on Friday in both Los Angeles 
and Berkeley.

  ###


-- 
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863.9977 www.freedomarchives.org
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