Mediators Talk with Prisoners as Hunger Strike Reaches One Month, Situation Critical, Negotiations Crucial

Today, August 8 2013,  marks one month for prisoners on hunger strike throughout the California prison system.  Earlier today, the mediation team working on behalf of the strikers was able to speak to the prisoners at Pelican Bay who initially called for the strike.  Just moments ago members of the mediation team issued the following statement:

All of the members of our mediation team were able to speak with hunger strike representatives at Pelican Bay for two-and-a-half hours.   All four representatives are totally united and resolute.  They were clear that this peaceful protest is not about them—it is about making real, fundamental changes to an incredibly unjust system. 

They haven’t eaten for 32 days but they are cogent, focused, and committed.

We were able to work together to develop new ideas about how to move forward, which we’ll be acting on over the next few days.  The mediation team will be staying in contact with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, and issuing statements daily.

Reports from prisoners at Pelican Bay indicate escalated mistreatment from guards in the Administrative Segregation and Security Housing Units.  Prisoners report being verbally abused by guards and over hearing them discussing orders “to treat some prisoners really nicely and others really badly.”   Despite the abuse, prisoners remain steadfast in continuing their protest.  “They are obviously feeling the effects of not having eaten in over a month, but they remain strong and in high spirits” said Anne Weills, a lawyer representing strikers at Pelican Bay. “They are fighting for themselves, their fellow prisoners, and those who will come after them.  They are incredibly inspired by all the support they’ve received, and are steadfast in their commitments to improving conditions.”

On the outside, prisoners’ loved ones, activists, and advocates continue their fight to compel the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) and Governor Jerry Brown to urgently address the human rights violations happening in the prison system by calling for immediate good-faith negotiations with strikers.

“These men are risking their lives to insist on humane conditions and an end to indefinite sentences of solitary confinement in California’s prison system,” Said mediator Barbara Becnel . “Recent reports from these prisoners demonstrate that their brave efforts have been made all the more difficult by prison guards who are treating them very harshly.  Meanwhile, the hunger strikers have entered a very dangerous phase of their protest: their health could be permanently damaged and they could even die. As for Gov. Brown and CDCR Secretary Beard: How many prisoners have to be harmed by guards and the conditions which violate international human rights standards before state authorities are willing to seriously consider their demands for real change? How many prisoners have to die?”

11 thoughts on “Mediators Talk with Prisoners as Hunger Strike Reaches One Month, Situation Critical, Negotiations Crucial

    • Jerry Brown and Jeffery Beard need to humble themselves and try a day in a shu cell and see how they feel about it.

  1. Today August 8,2013 many People,including my self participated on a Vigil here in Down Town LA outside of a State Building,along with Religious Leaders. We All Prayed for the Prisoner Hunger Striker as They completed 31days fasting! We Their Famlies & Friends URGE GOV BROWN & SEC’TY BEARD TO COMPLY WITH THE FIVE CORE DEMANDS RIGHT NOW!!!. GOD IT’S WATCHING!!!!!!

  2. Question: why our governor and CDCR are so worried to release 10,000 inmates back to our communities?
    Gov. Brown and CDCR: Because they are dangerous to our society.
    Question: Why are they dangerous to our society dear Mr Brown?
    Mr Brown: Uhh.. maybe because we’ve treated them like animals?
    Conclusion: What You Plant Is What You Get

  3. Pingback: Calipatria Hunger Striker: "Putting Everything On The Line For Dignity" - Solitary Watch

  4. Pingback: Mediators Talk with Prisoners as Hunger Strike Reaches One Month Mark, Situation Remain… | Research Material

  5. -DOING TIME- BY;C.Turner-Borman I am somebodys husband,father,relative or friend Living through this situation that Im in I may or may not have committed the crime But Ive been judged guilty And Im doing the time Punitive isolation will never cure What got me here, and thats for sure My hunger for respect is a priority While I am paying my debt to society Physical violence is worthless Not worth a dime it only brings grief And more hard time Refusing to eat is my non-violent way To bring attentionand to have a say Somebody please listen Dont let me waste away Pray that we can work together for a better day Re-habilitation will never occur Under the conditions That most prisoners serve Everybody suffers, nobody wins Whether youre out or whether youre in There has got to solution that we all can accept,solidarity is possibleif promises are kept Solidarity; A state of being united in support of common interests. [ This way made by my friend GOD BLESS]

  6. Brave people, all of them! I heard from my friend in the short corridor (who was a striker last time but could only do it for the first week this time because of the terrible toll on his health) that they are not getting regular time out in their dog runs for exercise. Clear that there is vindictive behavior from the guards, who see their huge pay and vast benefits disappearing. All of us outside must continue the fight against the SHU – and all prisons.

  7. Pingback: NEWS: Roundup of National News on Isolated Confinement, July/August 2013

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