2013 California Prison Hunger Strikes Analysis

Wednesday, March 16, 2022 8:53:58 AM

2013 California Prison Hunger Strikes Analysis



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What you need to know about California's prison hunger strike

Uthman told Remes one detainee threw a rock in response to the rubber-bullet firing, not the other way around. In early February, detainee attorneys say Guantanamo guards renewed searches of detainee cells and confiscated personal items such as photographs, letters, legal papers, exercise mats, blankets, towels, and tooth brushes. The tipping point, the attorneys say, occurred when the guards began searching detainee Korans, something guards had not done since Pardiss Kebriaei, an attorney with the New York-based Center for Constitutional Rights, spoke on the phone last week to one detainee who said he is participating in a hunger strike, Ghaleb Nassar Al-Bihani, from Yemen. Al-Bihani said, as of last week, he had refused all food except water, tea, and coffee for 30 days and had lost 23 pounds, according to Kebriaei.

She said Al-Bihani is a diabetic, and she is worried about permanent damage to his body's organs. Anne Richardson, a California attorney who represents an Afghan detainee called Obaydullah, said he told her over the phone last week that he had lost 15 pounds after refusing food over the harsh new rules. Defense Department spokesman Durand, at Guantanamo, described the accusations that detainee conditions had deteriorated as "patently false" and that Korans were being mishandled as "simply untrue. We routinely conduct searches for contraband that could be used to harm guards, medical personnel, translators, instructors, attorneys, or detainees," Durand said. The Koran is treated with the utmost respect.

Durand said in comparison to the 14 detainees the military considers hunger strikers now, there were once more than at one point in He said, "At no time is a detainee deprived of the basic elements of humane treatment: food, water, religious articles, hygiene items, medical treatment, or physical recreation opportunities. Please enter email address to continue. Please enter valid email address to continue. Chrome Safari Continue. California prisons continue to have a high rate of assaultive incidents among prisoners and from prisoners to staff. There is no proof or even any study that demonstrates that these measures are effective anti-gang measures.

They appear to be no more useful than previous brutalities …. The gang leadership predictably uses the snitch sessions to falsely target their rivals, or just recruit new members. Just as we have seen in US anti-terror investigations, information derived from coercion is often unreliable. Current and retired officers, prisoners and parolees allege that correctional officers and their superiors routinely file bogus or misleading reports, destroy or falsify documentation of abuses, and intimidate colleagues or inmates who push back.

And there is a core group of us who are committed to taking this all the way to the death if necessary. Andy Worthington says Andy, very important point you make in the above comments. It has been established that solitary confinement is a type of psychological torture. So, this needs to be established as a norm throughout the world. The prisoners have every right to complain. We should all support their hunger strike. I think the authorities are afraid of losing control and had hoped to save money on fewer prison staff by reclassifying prisoners. What an inhumane way to make more profits. Good to hear from you, Willy. Somehow it would be entirely appropriate for the disgusting, clinically callous times in which we live if subjecting prisoners to the torture of prolonged solitary confinement was a money-saving measure as well as a form of torture that is justified administratively.

What a disgrace! The connections between prolonged solitary confinement and torture are clear to me. Thanks, George. Yes, the enormity of the problem in the States is truly horrific. I never heard of SHUs before ten minutes ago. To me, it seems like a way of getting a prisoner into a Supermax, without really saying so. Internally, the conditions seem quite similar: in both cases, psychological torture, as Willy has said. Specifically, sensory desensitisation resulting in demotivation and loss of sense of freedom. Thanks again, George. Well, the rot set in with the false justification for Supermax prisons in the first place, I suppose, as a line was crossed which enabled decision-makers and the public to somehow claim that it was acceptable to hold prisoners in solitary as a deliberate policy rather than just for specific punishment.

That should never have happened, but it did, in , and supermaxes and solitary then became more and more popular. It was because they had become used to a horrific and barbaric policy, and had even become used to justifying it and even endorsing it. The problem with these statistics is that they swing both ways. As prisons appear to become safer, prison officials decide that they need fewer and fewer staff. This trend continues and seems like a good idea because it saves money. Then inmates can take advantage of these staff shortages to commit crimes within prison walls and then the staffing issue is addressed for a period of time.

With the increased staff, assaults go down again, and so open positions are left unfilled to save money again until more people are injured. Much of the prison overcrowding problem is the attitude of society in general. People are placed into prison because they represent some sort of threat. What happens to that prisoner once the threat is removed no longer becomes an issue for the average citizen. Billions of dollars of taxpayer funds are at stake.

During the 40 years when funding to prison systems were fairly static, the prison populations also remained fairly static. Maybe the best solution would be to de-fund prisons to a certain extent so that alternative options can be developed and the serious, high-risk offenders can be appropriately housed. By taking a second look at our sentencing laws and finding alternatives to immigration imprisonment, we can dramatically reduce prison populations. More than 30, California prison inmates initiated a hunger strike to protest solitary confinement practices that were incorporated because of space issues. Disease rates can be times greater in a prison, especially when considering diseases like tuberculosis.

Despite declining crime rates, the state and federal prison population increased from k to 1. From , prison population rates actually declined in the United States, but this stopped in with a 6, increase in prisoners at the state level. The federal prison population decreased in size for the first time since , with 1, fewer prisoners in than in

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