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Tag: Sal Rodriguez

Corcoran hunger strike negotiations: an extreme form of political discourse

To those of you familiar with the domestic torture program of the CDCR and the ongoing protracted struggle to realize the five core demands, the state’s loose relationship with the truth comes as no surprise. For those of you just gaining familiarity with this social ill, what follows should prove helpful in providing you with a greater insight into the dynamics of power relationships in the U.S.

As 30,000 join California prison hunger strike, corrections officials issue guidelines...

On Monday, July 8, California prisoners launched their third hunger strike in two years, protesting conditions in the Security Housing Units, where thousands of prisoners are held in segregation units designed to limit communication. While the largest one-day participation of the prior two strikes rose to over 11,000, Monday’s strike began with a historic 30,000 people inside California’s prisons refusing breakfast and lunch.

California prisoners launch new hunger strike to protest solitary confinement

Hundreds of people held in California prisons are expected to launch their third large-scale hunger strike in two years today. The current strike, announced by leaders at Pelican Bay State Prison on Feb. 14, is seen as a resumption of the large-scale strikes in June and September 2011, when thousands of prisoners across the state stopped eating for days or weeks in order to press for the five demands laid out by the strike organizers.

‘Systemic failures persist’ in California prison mental health care, judge rules

Gov. Jerry Brown’s bid to end federal control over the state prison system’s mental health system was denied in federal court. Judge Karlton determined that “systemic failures persist in the form of inadequate suicide prevention measures, excessive administrative segregation of the mentally ill, lack of timely access to adequate care, insufficient treatment space and access to beds, and unmet staffing needs.”

California Assembly reviews solitary confinement policies as prisoners threaten new hunger...

On Monday, Feb. 25, the California Assembly’s Public Safety Committee, chaired by Assembly Member Tom Ammiano, held a hearing on the state’s Security Housing Units (SHUs). The hearing comes 18 months after the committee held a similar hearing prompted by a three-week long hunger strike in June 2011 that involved thousands of California prisoners across the state. Monday’s hearing focused on the implementation of new CDCR policies and considerations of their appropriateness.

Solitary confinement policies in California revised again, as inmate leaders promote...

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation has recently circulated a memo regarding the most recent revised edition of its Step Down Program (SDP) and Security Threat Group (STG) Program proposal. The revised policies come one year after a series of statewide hunger strikes by inmates in the Security Housing Units (SHU) in Pelican Bay and other California state prisons.

Political or gang activity? ‘New Afrikan’ inmates in solitary confinement

Three African-American inmates in Pelican Bay and Corcoran SHUs criticize their continued isolation for being members of the Black Guerilla Family, the only Black prison gang in California that will lead to placement in the SHU. Drawings of dragons are used to justify their continued isolation.

First ever U.S. Senate hearing: Solitary confinement comes to Washington

“Solitary confinement does one thing: It breaks a man’s will to live and he ends up deteriorating,” testified Texas death row exoneree Anthony Graves before a Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Tuesday, June19. The hearing, convened by Subcommittee Chair Sen. Richard Durbin, was the first of its kind at the federal level on the issue of solitary confinement.

Families of California prisoners respond to controversial solitary confinement reform proposal

We are the families of thousands of loved ones who have been incarcerated indefinitely – some for decades – in California’s “supermax” segregated and administrative housing units. Solitary confinement, even for short periods, has been known for centuries to cause irreparable physical and psychological damage: torture. Yet California continues to condone this practice.

Family of California prisoner who died on hunger strike speaks out

The death of Christian Gomez, 27, the first California hunger strike martyr, will be covered by Democracy Now! on Friday, Feb. 24, on 1,024 TV and radio stations around the country and online at DemocracyNow.org. His family is speaking out about the loss of their family member in the hope that similar incidents are avoided in the future. While CDCR emphasizes Gomez' conviction to discourage public sympathy, his sister contends his conviction was wrongful, and according to a late report, the assault charge that sent him to segregation was about to be dropped.

Conflicting reports on hunger strike at California’s Corcoran State Prison

The striker reportedly knew Christian Gomez and described the day of his death. Several inmates were screaming and pounding their fists on their cell doors trying to get the attention of the correctional officers. His knuckles were noticeably battered during the visit. CDCR officials continue to assert that autopsy results show Gomez did not die of starvation.

Corcoran ASU hunger strikers continue after one starves to death, while...

CDCR disclosed that as of Feb. 9, 30 men at Corcoran ASU were still striking. One of them writes: “On or about Feb 2nd or 3rd 2012 an inmate has passed away due to not eating ... Inmates are passing out and having other medical problems ... There will be more casualties if this isn’t addressed or brought to light.”

Greed drives solitary confinement torture

We’re entering into our hunger strike on Sept. 26 because our suffering must be exposed to the world. We will not stop under any circumstances until we’re liberated from these gulags.

Latest News

Save Reid’s Records!

Reid’s Records is not closed – but it needs your business and support NOW! Otherwise, the iconic and beloved Reid’s Records, one of the few Black business remaining in Berkeley, will be closing it doors Oct. 19, after 75 years of serving South Berkeley’s and the Bay Area’s Black communities since 1945!

Dr. Belay Reddick launches #PardonMEAmerica

Dr. Belay Reddick has coined the hashtag and movement #PardonMEAmerica to seek commutations from President Donald Trump for him and his five friends who are lost in the maze of excessive, inappropriate sentences that have destroyed their lives without providing them second chances.

SF Black Film Fest’s headliner ‘Robeson Effect’ features Danny Glover, who’ll...

Two legendary thespians from Hunters Point and Fillmore, Ben Guillory and Danny Glover, are coming home with a film about their lives in theater. This is our story, and it is better to get history from the mouths of the people who made it.

‘Guitar Man’ opens SF Black Film Fest, featuring Rappin 4-Tay and...

The opening film for the San Francisco Black Film Festival this year is the much anticipated award winning “Guitar Man.” The main character, Buzzy Martin, taught music to prisoners at San Quentin and later took those experiences back to the at-risk youth that he taught and still teaches to this day.

All phone calls free from SF County Jail

Mayor London N. Breed and Sheriff Vicki Hennessy today announced that San Francisco will become the first county in the nation to make all phone calls from jail free and end all county markups on jail store items.