“HEALTH CARE IS A HUMAN RIGHT!” More than 120 health careprofessionals signed an open letter in support of the Five Demands of the Hunger Strikers:

According to Vallely captives were only restra...
According to Vallely captives were only restrained for twenty minutes during their forcefeedings. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Last week, more than 120 health care professionals signed an open letter in support of the Five Demands of the hunger strikers. The letter stated, in part:

“As healthcare providers, we are issuing this statement to register our concern with reports that the hunger strikers are being denied appropriate medical care. Where there has been a concerted attempt by the authorities to censor the strikers, and to keep the strike out of the news, dozens of letters from affected strikers at prisons across the state have reached supporters on the outside. These letters repeat similar details of medical neglect and abuse.”


From the Adjustment Center of San Quentin:
“…This is just a small note to let you know I’m still alive. But on Friday morning at around 12:30am they found me on the floor unresponsive & a little blue-ish purple. From what the guys here say, the guards opened the door, I fell out and they jumped on me with a shield, cuffed me and took me out. Then dropped me at the first tier ’cause their hands slipped..
“…What happened?…The nurses said kidney failure. That I was so dehydrated that my kidneys shut down and I was blue-ish purple ’cause I almost froze to death….they put me on IV and warmed up my body with blankets and sent me… back to my cell by 4 am…
“The nurses said…they’ll see me again soon if I don’t start eating. Which I won’t…”

From Corcoran State Prison:
“The doctor asked me how long I’d gone without eating and I told him (at that time)
31 days. I then began explaining about my racing heart and difficulty breathing, and he
said, ‘You’re still hunger striking? I thought you were here for…refeeding… Because you’ve not eaten in over 30 days, you’re high risk, but if you don’t eat, there’s nothing I can do for you. Just sign a ‘Do Not Resuscitate’ order so you can die!'”

“One doctor told a hunger striker, ‘Unless you’re dying or seriously bleeding, we
can’t do anything for you. Sacramento has ordered us to only provide the most minute
of medical care…”

“Dr. Wang has instructed medical staff here to completely disregard the mass hunger strike, fasting and refeeding policy…so none of the medical or custody staff, anyone, knows what they’re supposed to be doing…”

“A hunger striker with chronic back pain has received pain relievers since 2010. Medical staff stopped it abruptly when he went on hunger strike. When the hunger striker asked for his medication, the doctor just laughed at him…”

“A prisoner had been hospitalized for high blood pressure (225) in June, before
the hunger strike began. But now that he’s on hunger strike, medical staff is doing
no blood pressure checks at all.”

From the SHU (Security Housing Unit) of Pelican Bay:
“…So far I’ve lost over 40 pounds, my energy level is at rock-bottom, and it’s
becoming increasingly more difficult to concentrate. But, my spirit is still soaring with the eagles; and emotionally and mentally, I’m strong and unwavering in my conviction to
follow this through to the end, if necessary. Some of us are ready and willing to take it to the grave…let’s just hope it doesn’t come to that…”



(1) “Medications are being withheld in an attempt to coerce those on strike into
abandoning their protest….
(2) “Prison medical staff are required to monitor the health and weigh those on strike. Yet, we hear that many institutions are violating this protocol…
(3) “…Nurses are required to conduct daily checks (but) are simply advising
strikers to drink a lot of water.
(4) “…Physicians have been dismissive of patient complaints, and patients in
need have been refused care and have been ignored…in some cases, even mocked by the very health care practitioners they are supposed to be able to depend upon for care.
(5) “CDCR refuses to provide (hunger strikers) with liquid sustenance other than water, and guards even confiscate any such liquids that (hunger strikers) had in their cells.
(6) “(Hunger strikers) are not being provided with medical release forms, which they need to send to their loved ones and family members, or to outside supporters, so that these people can access their medical records.
(7) “(Hunger strikers) have been reclassified as ‘not on hunger strike’ because they have been accused of having food in their cells…Determining who is (or is not) on hunger strike (can) mean that prisoners who have not eaten for weeks will be dropped off the list for ‘medical oversight’.”

The health workers condemn such ‘”coercive neglect/abuse as both unethical and illegal under California Penal Code Section 673.” They allege that “such acts of deliberate
indifference to a patient’s serious medical needs constitute a violation under the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution, which prohibits cruel and unusual punishment.”

(For a complete text of Health Care Professionals‘ open letter, please check

(Sitawa is one of the four Pelican Bay ‘Short Corridor’ Reps of the Hunger Strikers)

” Be mindful that our success will depend on our collective resolve
and determination to put an end to this system of human torture.”



1. Receiver, Ca. Correctional Health Care Services:
J. Clarke Kelso: 916-739-7000; email CPRCK@cdcr.ca.gov;

2. CCHCS “Inmate Inquiry Hotline”: 916-691-1404;

3. CDCR Secretary Jeffrey Beard‘s ‘Hunger Strike Hotline’: 916-324-3397;

4. Governor Jerry Brown: 916-445-2841 (for English, press 1, then 6);

5. Chief Medical Officer (CMO) at Corcoran Prison:
Jeffrey Wang, MD: phone: 559-992-8800 x6930;
email: CORJW1@cdcr.ca.gov.


PLEASE SEND THIS MESSAGE: (Always leave a message, even if you just get a
voice mail. Be polite but persistent. Lives of hunger strikers are in the balance.)

^^^ Do not threaten or punish hunger strikers by denying them medical care!
^^^ Demand that all health care workers uphold their codes of medical ethics and
provide highest quality of medical care to all prisoners;
^^^ Demand that Gov. Brown and CDCr Secretary Beard negotiate with the hunger
strikers immediately and meet their five reasonable demands.
^^^ (If you believe that Health Care should be a Human Right for all prisoners,
please let the prison authorities know.)

For daily highlights of the hunger strike, go to

Sign up for daily digests of this historic hunger strike.


Gary McDaid Suffering within in the Walls of MagHaberry

945315_197530197063900_1617406090_nMaghaberry Prison -THE ONGOING NEGLECT AND TORTURE BEING INFLICTED ON Gary McDaid – Maghaberry Prison !!!!

Jul 28

Posted by seachranaidhe1 wordpress.com/


Derry Sceal

The ongoing Neglect and Torture inflicted on Gary McDaid

It has been brought to the attention of the IRPWA that Gary McDaid is suffering a debilitating illness within the walls of MagHaberry but has been informed by the authorities that he will not be receiving treatment as he is not a sentenced prisoner.

Gary suffers from a serious form of Glaucoma and there is a genetic family history of this disease which has led to family members suffering complete blindness.

The optician who was able to gain access to examine him stated that he had not seen such a rapid regression in one so young and without treatment, could lead to Gary losing his sight.His feet have also swollen to such an extent, he can’t put on shoes.

Last week saw charges against Gary for wrecking his cell. Any and all personal artifacts were removed including photographs of his children.

Gary is and has been on dirty protest as a result of the sectarian authorities within the gaol granting MI5 free reign to his cell to make approaches and mentally torture him.

He is existing in his own waste in solitary confinement with Loyalist prisoners being given access to bang on his cell door and shout threats consistently and this all appears to be part of a greater agenda by shadowy British crown forces to exert pressure on him through this form of torture.

His existence, ill, in a bare holding cell with a one inch rubber mattress and living with the stench and health implications through his protest, some would have you think had been consigned to history.

This is reality in 2013. This is British torture on Irish soil and typifies the age old disregard towards human rights for those not beholden to the British crown.

Help end the neglect in MagHaberry..Help highlight the ongoing injustices by a cruel British torture regime and those who back them.

Derry Sceal

Around 30.000 inmates held in prisons across California have taken the first steps towards …the largest hunger strike in state history

30,000 California prisoners launch largest hunger strike in state history

Published time: July 09, 2013 17:13
Edited time: July 10, 2013 00:15


Around 30,000 inmates held in prisons across California have taken the first steps towards engaging in what could become the largest hunger strike in state history.

Prisoners at 11 state facilities began refusing meals early Monday, after months of plotting a demonstration which they hope will bring change to a number of longstanding grievances against the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation – particularly the practice of indefinitely housing some detainees in total isolation.

In a letter obtained by the LA Times, protesters reportedly demanded that the state retire its current solitary confinement policies and allow inmates accused of prison gang involvement to spend a maximum of only five years in isolation. Currently there is no limit on how long inmates thought to be connected to internal gangs can spend in Segregated Housing Units (SHUs). According to the LA Times, 4,527 inmates at four state prisons are now living in such units – including 1,180 at Pelican Bay State Prison in northern California, where the demonstration was hatched.

“The principal prisoner representatives from the PBSP SHU Short Corridor Collective Human Rights Movement do hereby present public notice that our nonviolent peaceful protest of our subjection to decades of indefinite state-sanctioned torture, via long term solitary confinement will resume today…consisting of a hunger strike/work stoppage of indefinite duration until CDCR signs a legally binding agreement meeting our demands, the heart of which mandates an end to long-term solitary confinement (as well as additional major reforms),” reads the letter, which is posted on Prisoner Hunger Strike Solidarity website.

The media report states that inmates are also seeking education and rehabilitation programs, as well as the right to make monthly phone calls.

Prisoners in California have held similar protests before, including a 2011 hunger strike which originated at Pelican Bay and eventually accumulated the support of 6,000 inmates across the state.

That hunger strike eventually led to a class-action lawsuit being filed against the corrections department, which has recently entered a mediation phase. But two years after the lawsuit against the state originated, prisoners still aren’t satisfied with the response they’ve received.

“While the CDCR has claimed to have made reforms to its SHU system — how a prisoner ends up in the solitary units, for how long, and how they can go about getting released into the general population — prisoners’ rights advocates and family members point out that the CDCR has potentially broadened the use of solitary confinement, and that conditions in the SHUs continue to constitute grave human rights violations,” reads their latest letter.

The state does not officially recognize a hunger strike until participants have refused nine consecutive meals. On Monday, corrections spokeswoman Terry Thornton told the LA Times that 30,000 prisoners skipped breakfast and lunch, putting them on course to launch an actual strike by the middle of the week.

Despite gearing towards what could become the largest hunger strike in state history, Thornton said that “everything has been running smoothly.”

“It was normal. There were no incidents,” at Monday’s protest, Thornton said. But according to the newspaper’s Paige St. John, around 2,300 prisoners aren’t just skipping meals – they’re also beginning to skip work and class.

Ms. Thornton did not immediately respond about the status of the budding strike when approached by RT early Tuesday.

According to the inmates, the California prison system currently holds over 10,000 prisoners in solitary confinement units, including dozens who have spent more than 20 years each in isolation. Gabriel Reyes, who has spent 16 years in an SHU, wrote a letter published this week by Truth-Out. “I understand I broke the law, and I have lost liberties because of that. But no one, no matter what they’ve done, should be denied fundamental human rights, especially when that denial comes in the form of such torture,” he wrote.

Reyes is currently serving a sentence of 25-years-to-life for burgling an unoccupied swelling. He says that the prison’s determination of a “gang affiliation” has left him spending 22.5 hours a day in isolation.

2013 International Conference on the Rigths of Children & Women in Conflict with the Law


2013 Global Conference On Juvenile And Women Justice

May 22, 2013 – May 23, 2013 Lagos/Nigeria,   Nigeria

A two day International Conference on “Imprisonment of Children, Pregnant Women and Nursing Mothers as a Matter of Last Resort.

The United Nations (UN Beijing Rules) on the Administration of juvenile justice, Rule 26 and its corresponding sections especially  26.2 states that  “Juveniles in institutions shall receive care, protection and all necessary assistance – social, educational, vocational, psychological, medical and physical that they may require because of their age, sex, and personality and in the interest of their wholesome development.”  Section 26.1 states that “the objective of training and treatment of juveniles placed in institutions is to provide care, protection, education and vocational skills, with a view to assisting them to assume socially constructive and productive roles in society”

In addition, The African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child, in 1 states that “every child shall have the right to an education”. Thus sub-section 3,and sub-section  a-c of the same article state that “States Parties to the present Charter shall take all appropriate measures with a view to achieving the full realization of this right and shall in particular: (a) provide free and compulsory basic education; (b) encourage the development of secondary education in its different forms and to progressively make it free and accessible to all; (c) make the higher education accessible to all on the basis of capacity and ability by every appropriate means”

Sadly, however, Nigeria and many other African nations continue to detain children arbitrarily, provide little or no education and any form of training for juvenile offenders and offer no protection of their basic human rights, thereby exposing them to different forms of abuses, exploitations and diseases which have severe and lasting consequences on them and society. This is so because in many parts of Africa, children in conflict with the law are for the most part dealt with as adults, using deprivation of liberty as the primary sentencing option. One obvious weakness of this system is that the needs and interests of the child as well as the root causes of conflict with the law are often ignored and little or nothing is done to offer care and assistance with reintegration into society.

In addition, most children in Nigeria have no understanding of the justice systems and their rights which makes it unlikely for them to challenge and report abuses committed within the system. More so, many institutions dealing with children offenders are notoriously child-unfriendly and their physical environment are damaging to the child’s mental, health, social and psychological well-being.

Similarly,  Rule 22 of the Bangkok Rules affirms that “ punishment by close confinement or disciplinary segregation shall not be applied to pregnant women, women with infants and breastfeeding mothers in prison” Also, Rule 57 says that” the provisions of the Toyo Rules shall guide the development and implementation of appropriate responses to women offenders. Gender-specific option for diversionary measures and pre-trial and sentencing alternatives shall be developed with Member States’ legal systems, taking account of the history of victimization of many women offenders and their caretaking responsibilities”. While Rule 60 sums it up that “appropriate resources shall be made available to devise suitable alternatives for women offenders in order to combine non-custodial measures with interventions to address the most common problems leading to women’s contact with the criminal justice system. These may include therapeutic courses and counseling for victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse; suitable treatment for those with mental disability; and educational and training programmes to improve employment prospects. Such programmes shall take account of the need to provide care for children and women-only services”.

However, the number of women, pregnant women and nursing mothers in prison continues to grow, resulting in the alarming number of children living in prisons with a parent on the continent. In Nigeria, for example, the United States Human Rights Reports in 2010, indicated that there were more than 300 of these children, most of whom were born in prison and continued to live there.

To respond to these concerns and to help African States develop their justice systems to the needs of children in line with the demands of international standards, Defence for Child International (DCI) and the African Child Policy Forum (ACPF) organized the Global Conference on Child Justice in Africa in Kampala in November, 2011. CURE-Nigeria was represented by its Country Director, Mr. Sylvester T. Uhaa, who spoke on “Children with their Mothers in Prison: A grave threat to national security, a slap at the efforts towards the attainment of the MDGs in Africa and a violation of their rights”

The outputs from the Kampala Conference included Guidelines on Action for Children in the Justice System in Africa as well as a report on Achieving Children Friendly Justice in Africa (which is yet to be published). To continue with the deliberations of the Kampala Conference and to facilitate the development of guidelines for child-sensitive justice in Nigeria, a two day International conference has been planned. The Nigerian Guidelines will be modeled after the Guidelines from the Kampala Conference, which will be contextualized to Nigeria. A follow-up programme to the Kampala Conference therefore needs to be developed so as to ensure the endorsement of the Guidelines adopted at the conference by Nigeria once the Guidelines have been adopted by the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child and approved by the African Union. In that regard, popularization of the Guidelines and also the study on children in the justice system needs to start now as the treatment of children in the justice system in Nigeria is in need of reform.

Consequently, the conference in Nigeria will bring together  key stakeholders such as the media, the legislature, foreign missions, the judiciary, the Federal and State Ministries of Justice, the Federal Ministry of Interior, the Judiciary, the Federal Ministries of Education, Women and Social Development and Health, UNICEF, WHO, the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child,  the UN Special Rappatour on Children, the Nigerian Police, the Nigerian Prison Service, NGO’s and Civil Societies, the National Human Rights Commission, and experts to exchange ideas, experiences, information and knowledge on best practices as well as develop national guidelines on dealing with children and women in conflict with the law and  children living in prisons with a parent, as well as children of incarcerated parents  in line with international standards.


“Why is Leonard Peltier Still in Prison?” asked Michelle Bollinger, Counterpunch


Justice is 33 Years Overdue for America‘s Most Famous Political Prisoner

Why is Leonard Peltier Still in Prison?



Friends of Peltier

young humans in shadow


Rear view of The monument to the savior of the...
Rear view of The monument to the savior of the world (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


by Alexandra Early

( January 12, 2013, San Salvador, Sri Lanka Guardian) On December 12, 2012, 12 young people were arrested  in the poor community of El Progreso 3, in the northeastern part of San Salvador. Dressed all in black with their faces covered, police from the much-feared Anti-Gang Unit stormed the community in the middle of night, going home to home trampling down doors and pulling young people from a community center. The police claimed that the goal of the raid was to arrest suspected gang members, but several young community leaders were also apprehended, while their terrified families and neighbors looked on. The students were taken directly to jail, charged with illicit association, and thrown into crowded cells already filled with accused criminals awaiting trial.
Now, nearly a month after the raid, neighbors and members of the Movement of Popular Resistance-October 12 (the MPR-12), a national alliance of community organizations and unions, are demanding that the six youth leaders arrested be released from the overcrowded temporary jail where they are being held in inhumane conditions. Community members gathered in front of the downtown office of the Ombudsman of Human Right to show support for these falsely accused youth leaders and demand that the national police and specialized anti-gang units stop terrorizing the communities in and around the areas where the students were arrested.
About 50 people, including family members and neighbors of the arrested youth, addressed the Salvadoran press and held signs declaring, “Organizing to Improve our Communities is not a Crime” and, “Stop the Criminalization of Protest.” Ana Gladis Rivera, spoke about her twenty-five -year old son, Emerson Rivera, who, along with a friend and fellow youth organizer, Giovanni Aguirre, has been in hiding since the raid, fearing that to turn himself over to the authorities would land him in another overcrowded jail cell.
Like the others, Emerson’s mother was indignant at the charges of illicit association brought against her son, who has organized popular education schools, soccer tournaments and health campaigns in the community, and has worked with his neighbors on infrastructure projects in which the municipal government declined to invest. The MPR-12 alliance awarded Emerson and Giovanni scholarships in recognition of their local and national youth organizing work, and the two were expecting to start their university studies this month.  Rivera believes that her son and fellow youth organizers are being targeted because of their involvement with the leftist FMLN party and their outspoken criticism of the administration of Mayor Norman Quijano of the right-wing ARENA party. Quijano, who is also ARENA’s candidate for the 2014 presidential elections, has been widely criticized for his disregard for the poorer sectors of San Salvador. In November, Quijano ordered the violent eviction of thousands of street vendors, the majority of whom are single mothers with no other source of income.
Since the young men are charged with being tied to gang or organized crime, their cases are part of a specialized court system made up of police judges trained by the U.S. run International Law Enforcement Academy (ILEA). Under this specialized system, it seems that the police need very little, or even no, evidence to charge suspects with illicit association. In their first hearing in December, neither the youths nor their lawyers were able to present evidence in their defense. In 2007, the Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador (CISPES) reported on the increase in instances of police violence against young people and activists since the opening of the ILEA in 2005. These and other reports about the valuable lessons being imparted at the ILEA seem to contradict its stated goal of creating “a regional community of law enforcement professionals capable of effectively and efficiently fighting transnational crime, through the use of modern techniques and tools, with the utmost respect for human rights and the well-being of the people.” The terrorized residents of urban communities like El Progreso 3 would certainly question that description of their local police force. One of the El Progreso 3  residents told the staff of the Human Rights Office that a police officer stole $2000 from her neighbor during the December 12th raid and threatened to kill him if he reported the crime.
Community members from El Progreso 3 have been struggling under the dual pressures of police harassment and the violence of street gangs for some years. Carlos Vasquez, who works with the Catholic Church on violence prevention efforts in El Progreso 3 and surrounding communities complained that the police didn’t even investigate the murders of community members killed by gang members in past years.  Their only activity was to , enter the community to collect the dead bodies. Instead of working on violence prevention, Vasquez says the police have ramped up their harassment of youth in the community, monitoring and photographing their organizing activities and movements. Residents fear that the anti-gang police will raid the community again using this information and they worry who will be taken next.
In the meantime, Emerson Rivera and his friend Giovanni Aguirre remain in hiding. Their fellow youth organizers are stuck inside an overcrowded jail and are only allowed to see their mothers once a week for three minutes when they come to deliver food. The youths were thus unable to participate in a soccer tournament they had organized and could not celebrate the holidays with their families. They are waiting for the slow process of justice to continue, since their next court hearing may not be for three or four months. Ana Gladis Rivera and her neighbors and friends, however, will continue organizing for the release of the young leaders, hoping that with the support of Salvadoran and international human rights organizations Emerson, Giovanni and the others might be able to get back to their important work of improving their community and fighting for a more just and fair El Salvador.
Alexandra Early works in El Salvador as a Coordinator for U.S.-El Salvador Sister Cities (elsalvadorsolidarity.org). She can be reached at elsalvador.solidarity@gmail.com.

Grandma Edna Gordon, 91, asks for Leonard Peltier:

Leonard Peltier

Leonard Peltier…make that 37 years now for Leonard as a political prisoner of the USA.  He was 31 when he was falsely imprisoned in 1976; he’s now 68.  

His personal friend, Seneca Wisdomkeeper Grandma Edna Gordon, now 91, author of 2 books* of ancient wisdom for modern times, asks President Obama:



free our brother Leonard.

Tens of millions will applaud you  when you do.

You will touch the heart of humanity.


From each and all of our hearts, Mr. President,



Free our beloved brother

after 37 years if imprisonment

for the crime of standing up for his People…

for the crime of being INNOCENT.


Yes, free Leonard,

a brave and loving man,

as near as we’re likely to get

in these dark times  

to a Human Manifestation

of the sacred White Buffalo,

the very symbol of ALL HUMANITY


Free him & you free us All—

including yourself, Mr President.


We, your People, pray that you


                                                        –Grandma Edna Gordon via Harvey Arden

my comment:

“If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” – Mother Teresa


If you agree with this,

send a reply to this email with ‘AGREE’ on subject line

&/Or leave a message or CC of this statement by Edna to



*Voice of the Hawk Elder (www.haveyouthought.com) (2006)

& A Broomstick Revolution (www.broomstickrevolution.com (2012)

Also check Leonard’s own book: