Update: July 2013 Solitary Confinement Hunger Strike Solidarity Events
On Friday, June 21, the Stop Mass Incarceration Network and community activists gathered at the intersection of Powell and Market in San Francisco to kick off a series of events protesting the cruel conditions of solitary confinement.
Rallies and solidarity events throughout the state have sprouted up in support of the California hunger strikers locked in solitary confinement. The strike is set to begin July 8, in response to the lackluster attempts by Governor Jerry Brown and California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) to meet 2011 hunger strike demands.
"Locked Up" Should Not Mean "Forgotten"
Friday was the first of several days of solidarity with the hunger strikers. Demonstrators spoke with passersby, handed out informational handbills, and had members of the crowd sign on to their banner to show support.
The goal of these public events is to garner support for the hunger strike and to raise awareness around the inhumane conditions of solitary confinement.
"It's very easy to forget the struggles of the less fortunate; they are locked away out of sight and thus tend to fall out of mind.
"This kind of advocacy forces us to confront the harsh reality of oppression, and hopefully, forces us to act,” said community activist Armand Domalewski when asked about the importance of communicating the message behind the hunger strike.
Use Your Power as an Ally to Defend Human Rights
Supporters of the secure holding unit (SHU) prisoners' hunger strike are revving up their efforts with continued demonstrations throughout the state. On Friday, June 28 the same group of activists gathered to display a banner and distribute leaflets outside of the California State Building in San Francisco.
Again on Sunday they gathered in San Francisco, alongside the LGBT community and allies, to spread the message of the hunger strike throughout the throngs flanking the Gay Pride parade along Market Street.
In the days leading up to the strike, we are all called to remember that prisoners’ rights are human rights. The measure of our commitment to those rights is reflected through our willingness to stand with the least empowered members of society.
Make your voice heard - sign the petition to tell Governor Brown and CDCR to meet the demands of prisoners in isolation and be sure to get involved in future rallies!
Come Out to an Upcoming Solidarity Event
Tuesday, July 2: Come build a replica of a solitary cell (SHU). Justin Herman Plaza, San Francisco.
Wednesday, July 3rd, 4-6pm: Rally in support of prison hunger strikers and their five demands. Powell & Market, San Francisco.
Thursday, July 4th, 8-10pm: Solidarity demonstration in Oscar Grant Plaza, Broadway & 14th, Oakland.
Friday, July 5, 10am-7pm: Information sharing in Union Square, San Francisco.
Saturday, July 6, 10am-7pm: Rally, vigil, and rolling fast in support of prisoner hunger strike with model SHU. Justin Herman Plaza, San Francisco.
Sunday, July 7th: Meet at Revolution Books Berkeley to travel to Pelican Bay State Prison.
Monday, July 8th: Rally at the gates of Pelican Bay Prison to support courageous prisoners on the first day of the hunger strike.
Monday, July 8th: 8:00 PM Rally in support of the first day of the hunger strike. Norwalk City Hall, 12700 Norwalk Ave, Norwalk CA
There will be a full-size replica of a solitary cell.
Friday, July 19th: Rallies in SF and Oakland. 11:30 - 1:00 at the California State Building at McAllister and Van Ness. And 4:00 - 6:00 PM at 14th and Broadway in Oakland.
Have you heard of other solidarity events? Please share details in the comments below!