Rates of gang activity, yard violence, illegal drug sales and assaults on staff are increasing in California, while decreasing in other states. Maryland has recently closed its SHU.
The psychologically brutal and degrading conditions of long term SHU confinement encourages violence and harassment by guards and enrages inmates.
SHU inmates have no physical contact with anyone for years on end and rarely are able to talk to anyone else in the prison.
Inmates are often released directly from the SHU to the general public without skills that would help them survive. They are thus often less well equipped than nonSHU inmates to function in society. Staff working in SHU units have higher rates of drug use, family breakdown, and spouse/child abuse.
Numbers released by the federal receiver’s office show that on September 28th, nearly 12,000 prisoners were on hunger strike, including California prisoners who are housed in out of state prisons in Arizona, Mississippi and Oklahoma. This historic and unprecedented number shows the strength and resolve of the prisoners to win their 5 core demands and is a serious challenge to the power of the California prison system and to the Prison Industrial Complex in general.
California prisoners are on hunger strike again! The hunger strike that started on July 1 of this year in support of 5 demands, has been resumed by thousands of prisoners at Pelican Bay, Calipatria, CCI Tehachapi, Centinela, Corcoran, Chuckawalla Valley State Prison, Ironwood State Prison, Salinas Valley State Prison.
The prisoners say that the California Department of Corrections has retaliated against prisoners for participating in the strike and made only nominal policy changes in response to the strike. Prisoners say it is necessary to continue to put pressure on the CDCR to meaningfully change long-term solitary confinement policies and practices. Up to date information can be found at http://prisonerhungerstrikesolidarity.wordpress.com/.