At a short rally before the march to Oakland’s city jail, Janetta Johnson, representing the Trans GenderVariant Intersex Justice Project, stated, “Transgender prisoners are placed in the SHU based on the fact that they are transgender. It’s punitive.” The solidarity activists then marched down to the jail chanting, “Close the jails! Free them all! Tear down the prison walls!”
Hundreds of prisoners remain on hunger strike and work stoppage to protest unfair lockdown and isolation policies that keep many in indefinite isolation. The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation and Gov. Jerry Brown continue to ignore the dire conditions faced by SHU prisoners, but support is growing nationally to support their demands. Most recently Amnesty International and the California Conference of Catholic Bishops have spoken out against the inhumane condition of long-term isolation. Some Bay Area state legislators are calling for public hearings on the prisoners’ demands.
For more information, visit prisonerhungerstrikesolidarity.wordpress.com.