Corcoran Hunger Strike
On Friday, Sept. 26, 2014, three men locked inside unit 4B-1L of the Secure Housing Unit (SHU) of California State Prison-Corcoran started a hunger strike: Heshima Denham (J-38283), followed on Sept. 27 by Michael Zaharibu Dorrough (D-83611). Kambui Robinson (C-82830) will join them the following day for a few days or as long as he can considering his poor health.
The medical care at Corcoran SHU is so bad that life-threatening situations have occurred on too many occasions to the people in the SHU and possibly also elsewhere at CSP-Corcoran that they have had to resort to a hunger strike, the ultimate nonviolent protest, in order to make this point known to the warden, the medical receiver appointed by the court to oversee California’s notoriously bad prison healthcare, and the administration of the California Department of Corrections (CDCR).
Factors leading to protest against prison healthcare
Several factors made the three decide to protest the lack of healthcare now: Kambui has diabetes that is very badly regulated with a HBA1C of 9.3 – far too high for diabetics, especially with those already suffering loss of eyesight and neuropathy – and Zaharibu has dangerous, untreated, extremely high cholesterol, making him very vulnerable to stroke, and he has untreated gall stones and a CPAP machine without an extension cord to work effectively.
Custody staff interfering with medical staff is causing dangerous situations.
Hunger Strike for all people held in Corcoran SHU Requiring Healthcare
Although I concentrate on these three people who are on a hunger strike, they have expressed that they are striking for all people with a disease or injury needing better care, chronic or not, at CSP-Corcoran.
Please follow-up with a phone call. Please contact Corcoran Warden Ms. Connie Gipson phone at 559-992-8800 (Ext. 5008); CDCR Oversight Mr. Michael Stainer, Director of Adult Institutions Phone at 916-445-7688; Office of the Ombudsman Cherita Wofford phone at 918-324-6123; Office of the Inspector General Mr. Robert Barton Phone at (800) 700-5952.
You can give the same message, or use this simple message:
I demand that you:
1. Stop all destructive cell searches of prisoners in the Corcoran SHU by the I.G.I. (Institutional Gang Investigators) and prison guards.
2. Immediately return all confiscated property to prisoners whose cells were searched; account for all property taken; and reimburse all costs for destroyed property.”
Additional people to telephone: After you send your email, please make a few quick phone calls to make sure our message is heard! Please telephone Corcoran Warden Dave Davey at (559) 992-8800 and the Undersecretary for Health Care Services and Undersecretary for Administration and Offender Services, Diana Toche at (916) 691-0209. A sample script follows:
Hello my name is _________ and I am contacting you concerning the lack of specialized healthcare for people inside the CSP-Corcoran SHU, especially those with chronic diseases. I would like to make you aware of the fact that there is a hunger strike going on inside to demand that people with diabetes or sleep apnea and in need of special diets and other mental and physical healthcare get treated as they would when not incarcerated.
Also, prevent custody staff from interfering with medical issues, please!I respectfully insist you act this week to start making specific and general improvements to the healthcare in CSP-Corcoran SHU, before lives are lost. Thank you.
Prisoner Hunger Strike Solidarity Coalition
Please visit Corcoran SHU Prisoners Start Hunger Strike for Decent Healthcare to sign the petition.