41 California Inmates Begin Seventh Week Of Hunger Strike
Tuesday, August 27, 2013
Aired 8/27/13 on KPBS News.
Forty-one California inmates who've been on a hunger strike since July 8 are still refusing food. Prison officials are calling for an end to the protest.
California Forty-one California inmates who've been on a hunger strike since July 8 are still refusing food. Prison officials are calling for an end to the protest.
Inmates went on their hunger strike to protest prison conditions, including the practice of long-term solitary confinement. Nearly 400 prisoners have been isolated in small, windowless cells for more than a decade.
The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation maintains it has already addressed inmates concerns. Terry Thornton, a spokeswoman for the agency, said they are concerned about the well being of the prisoners.
"I get hate mail. We get calls from angry people saying that the CDCR doesn't care. And I just want to say that we do care. I think that this hunger strike needs to come to an end," Thornton said.
Corrections officials say striking inmates are getting electrolyte drinks, and some have received IV fluids.
A recent court order gives officials the right to force-feed prisoners if necessary.