URGENT: Hunger Striker’s Health Rapidly Deteriorates


Prisoner Hunger Strike Solidarity coalition received an urgent update from medical staff at Pelican Bay State Prison that the health of at least 200 hunger strikers in the SHU is rapidly worsening. A source with access to the current medical conditions who prefers to be unnamed reported:

“The prisoners are progressing rapidly to the organ damaging consequences of dehydration. They are not drinking water and have decompensated rapidly. A few have tried to sip water but are so sick that they are vomiting it back up. Some are in renal failure and have been unable to make urine for 3 days. Some are having measured blood sugars in the 30 range, which can be fatal if not treated.

SHU prisoners at Pelican Bay have said they are willing to risk their lives and will continue to strike until their demands are met. The CDCR continues to refuse to negotiate.

Prisoners across CA continue to refuse food in solidarity with the Pelican Bay SHU hunger strikers.

This past weekend, families and friends sent encouragement and support to their loved ones during weekend visits at prisons across the state, witnessing the toll the hunger strike is taking on their bodies. Families have said their loved ones are extremely pale, shaking and have already lost 20-30 pounds. Some families of prisoners who have only been drinking water for 12 days now witnessed their loved ones faint or go into diabetic shock in visiting rooms over the weekend.

People locked up across the state have been telling their friends and families about the tactics prison officials have been using to break the strike.

Many prisoners have said that medications are being denied to prisoners on hunger strike.

Prisoners have reported that guards in at least Pelican Bay General Population and Calipatria State Prison have been calling throughout blocks and units: “The Hunger Strike is over! The 5 demands have been met!” which is not true. According to family members of prisoners at Calipatria, participation at Calipatria was huge–at least 1,500 prisoners throughout that prison alone joined the hunger strike– until the guards spread rumors of the strike ending. Some prisoners at Calipatria remain on hunger strike, however.

While the CDCR released it’s estimate of 6,600 prisoners participating in the hunger strike during the 4th of July weekend and declared the numbers dropping to over 2,100 in the following days, of course the CDCR failed to mentioned how and why that happened. The decline in numbers in no way demonstrates a lack of support or dedication to this struggle from the prisoners, rather how eager the CDCR is to make this issue go away quickly and quietly.

Families and community organizations like Prison Moratorium Project continue to rally support outside of striking prisons like Corcoran, sharing information and trying to visit their loved ones as regularly as possible. Families and community members are also supporting the strike outside Pelican Bay.

Support for this hunger strike is at a crucial point, where we need to pressure the CDCR to negotiate with the prisoners immediately. Call the CDCR and urge them to negotiate NOW. Also call your legislators and urge them to make sure the CDCR negotiates with the prisoners in good faith. Click here for more info, including a sample script and phone numbers.

***The coalition also needs help getting updates and information to prisoners throughout CA. If you know people who are locked up in CA, please either send us their information or send them updates of the strike, including how people are supporting outside. The Hunger Strikers need our support, and need to know how much support is growing for them outside prison. ***

***An emergency press conference will be held Wed July 13th at 11 am outside the California State Building in San Francisco (Van Ness & McAllister)***

38 thoughts on “URGENT: Hunger Striker’s Health Rapidly Deteriorates

  1. thanks for sharing this important information concerning our warrior soldiers who dare to continue the hunger strike well know that death may be the only release for some from the s h u. We on the outside must continue to stand with our brutha’s till their demands are meet and continue to look out for them so there are no reprisals like in georgia just a few short months ago.
    Black Unity Movement stands in solidarity with prisoners thru-out califa’s during this strike and after. Revolutionary Blessingz

  2. Pingback: URGENT: Hunger Striker’s Health Rapidly Deteriorates « 4strugglemag

  3. There will also be an emergency press conference outside the Reagan Building in Los Angeles on Spring Street at 2:00 on July 13th as we are also calling for a day of fasting, at least 24 hours without food and will have an all night encampment at 5:00 p.m. @ 7825. S. Western Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90047-2728

  4. We need some type of help out here in Sacramento, CA. There has been nothing posted on our news, about the hunger strike.

    • Isabel! I’m trying to plan an action for Santa Cruz, where I currently live. But I’m from Sacramento and will be there this Saturday and Sunday. I know it’s short notice – but shall we try to plan something together?

  5. I am not sure if inmates are receiving mail in SHU, or if they are refusing to receive mail? I correspond therapeutically with an inmate whose welfare I’m deeply concerned about. I’ve had books sent to him, writing paper, and letters since July 1 and I haven’t heard from him (rare) so I don’t know if he’s received. I am willing to give you his contact information if you think that will be helpful. I want him to know (which I’ve stated in the letters) how much support he and the others have. Suggestions? thank you for all of these updates. So important!

      • Hi Barbara,

        I did get a letter today, such relief! It was written on Sunday, mailed Monday, received Wednesday (fastest ever?!). I know there are troubles with mail being withheld generally, but so far his letters have gone out, and I assume he has also received. So – take hope and hang in there!

  6. There are men dying in Corcoran and at Tehachapi, too… and they are not getting any attention!!! Please don’t forget them. At one point there were at least 13 prisons involved in this movement. Are there still hunger striker’s at RJ Donovan? Calpatria? What’s happening with these other inmates?

    • We have not forgotten the thousands of people inside prison across the state who have participated in the hunger strike, many of whom are still going without food and who’s medical conditions are also worsening. If we have not mentioned the specifics in our more recent updates, it’s because we do not know them. As many of us are aware, it is incredibly difficult to communicate across prison walls. If you have any information or updates from people you know inside, please contact us directly so we can help spread the word. We will certainly include all the information that we can into our updates. our email is prisonerhungerstrikesolidarity@wordpress.com

      • I’m trying to send an email to the email you have above it will not let me. Any other way I can get the email out.?

    • I am writing on regards about tehachapi my son julio contreras is in the shu he wrote me and is asking me to get in touch with the media he is on the strike I am concern I am backing up my son 100 percent I am getting in touch with the media and trying to get people to sign the petition for all the prisons involved please pray for them our sons,father’s,brothers.
      I Love you my son julio your mom melinda contreras

      • is there anyway you could visit him this weekend? I did not even see this! You can email me at dolorescanales@hotmail.com we also have a face book page and famalies are becoming connected thru this It is “Pelican Bay-Hunger Strike” it will come up with a flyer with yellow writting. The hunger strike far beyond Pelican Bay and they are ALL in my prayers! We are trying so hard to get connected!

  7. I could imagine how alone they must feel because I am out here and feel so helpless…like “is anyone listening”…it seems like if nothing is helping no matter how much effort I am putting into this. I hadnt even heard anything about Donavan or Calipatria lately….who is representing them? I dont even know what to think about all this now……………….I feel very alone

  8. I have felt extremely helpless at times regarding the brutality of the CDCR and their lack of action in this urgent matter. But what is more important to focus on is the courage of the prisoners who are so dedicated to resisting. It is such a sad matter in many ways, but because we are on the outside, we must continue to stand strong with them, and do anything we can. That means calling legislators, pressuring Matthew Cate, including the prisoners’ struggle in every day conversation to raise awareness.

    I’m trying to organize an action here in Santa Cruz. Do the same in your area!

    • Courtney,
      I live in Santa Cruz and would like to participate in a solidarity action in our community. Have you already planned something? Let’s communicate.
      Hasta la victoria siempre,
      Stewart Cooper

    • also go to congress.org — you can write a letter to every legislator in your district, and there is also an option to have your letter posted on the HOME page. it will help raise awareness.

  9. Pingback: URGENT: Hunger strikers’ health rapidly deteriorating | San Francisco Bay View

  10. This is so horrible… I can’t beleive how cruel they are too these inmates!!! I have been writing inmates for the last 18 years and fight for there rights and try to help them in anyway possible… Please let me know how I can help them out and be apart of this movement… Please help them, they are human beings!!! No one deserves to be treated this way and no one needs to die!!! LORD PLEASE HELP THESE MEN, MY HEART GOES OUT TO THEM…

  11. The negativity in our communities and families is at all time high . When we adress the situations at hand we are met with more negativity and less conpassion . The only way to help each other out is to reach inside of yourself and better your community . Perhaps we do not see the inpact this prisoners have with the very society from which they are deprived . The happiness i felt from seeing racial unification in the fight against injustice could be measured in tears . I know we have been bred to live in competion and retaliation , imagine a place of sharing and compasion .

  12. The United States, a country that decries others for their human rights offenses, that goes to war in the name of human rights should do something about the treatment of it’s own citizens. The treatment of prisoners is appalling, I stand is solidarity with those standing up for their rights and the rights of others!

  13. Pingback: URGENT: Hunger Striker’s Health Rapidly Deteriorates « Red Ant Liberation Army News

  14. I have not heard from my spouse since June 30th – he’s at Pelican Bay in the SHU and that is RARE… very rare. We write each other EVERY SINGLE DAY so this is beyond anything I’ve ever had to ensure.. I Feel so powerless. I wish I knew if he was getting my mail and if he’s okay. I don’t know what to do. The prison wont tell me – I already tried to call there… I just want to know my spouse is okay and why am I not getting any of his mail?.. Is mail going in and out of the SHU as it should or what in the world is happening?

    • Loretta I just received mail from an inmate I write in SHU/PB – dated July 10, mailed July 11, received July 13. Apparently he has received some of my mail. Of course there are irregularities as always, but take heart — mail DOES seem to be going in and out to the HS.

  15. Pingback: CA Prison Hunger Strikers’ Health Rapidly Deteriorating « occupy california

  16. Pingback: URGENT: Hunger Striker’s Health Rapidly Deteriorates « antiprisonvancouver

  17. Pingback: Noise for Pelican Bay Prisoners on Hunger Strike « Kasama

  18. If your interested in attending a rally this Sat. mid-afternoon please contact me on my twitter with a direct message. I’m thinking of having it in South Central Los Angeles, CA where a lot of communities have been affected due to poverty and racism by the powers that be. I want to hold a peaceful rally and talk about the conditions. It’s not right what they are doing by torturing and treating these inmates inhunmanely. Many of them want to be rehabilitated but our prison system is not designed for rehabilitation. It’s designed to keep you trapped for life once you enter the system’s complex web of perverted justice……….

  19. Pingback: Choosing Death Over Life: (Still) Starving to Stop Solitary | Find A Local Lawyer – Find Your Attorney


    • Mina please email me dolorescanales@hotmail.com where are you located? Can you visit him? I am trying to collect some funds to get famalies up to visit these other prisons asap!!! I honestly care about everyone of them and they (as the famalies ) are all in my prayers!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s