Santa Rita Jail hunger strike ends after 6th day

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Six days after it began, Santa Rita Jail’s hunger strike has ended, according to an article from The Mercury News.

To protest the jail’s allegedly unsanitary conditions, about 500 people participated in the main part of the strike. Attorney Yolanda Huang, who is representing the inmates, told The Mercury News that the inmates had also considered filing a lawsuit against Alameda County.

On Oct. 30, the organizers of the strike, including inmates at the jail, released a statement insisting that the jail adopt 26 demands to improve inmates’ quality of life while in the center. In their statement, they asked that the jail provide opportunities for inmates to clean their cells, include fruits and vegetables in meals and reduce the cost to make an out-of-prison phone call.

“Most of these demands are essentially just demands that the jail follow its own policy and stated objectives,” Brooke Terpstra, a member of the Oakland branch of the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee, previously told The Daily Californian. “They are not asking for the world, they are not asking for early release, they are not asking for reduced sentencing.”

In response, however, the Santa Rita Jail allegedly distributed citations to 12 people who refused to work and added about a month to their sentences, as previously reported by The Daily Californian.

Check back for updates.

Mallika Seshadri is an assistant news editor. Contact her at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @SeshadriMallika.