Media Silent As U.S. Prisoners Continue To Hunger Strike Abysmal Conditions
May 3, 2017
Prisoners across the U.S. have been holding hunger and labor strikes since last year, with tens of thousands of inmates protesting abuse and poor conditions. But news reports on the strikes have been few and far between, leaving prisoners’ requests for humane treatment in the dark.
On Oct. 30, 2016, Robert Earl Council was found sprawled unconscious on the floor of his cell in Alabama’s Limestone Correctional Facility after being on hunger strike for 10 days. Medical staff at the prison force-fed him intravenously, as his blood sugar levels had reached dangerous levels.
But Dara Folden, a member of the Free Alabama Movement, a prison reform advocacy group, believes the force-feeding was done with the additional motive of ending Council’s hunger strike and preventing him from garnering media attention.
But Council’s strikes – and the punitive action taken against him in return – did not end. In November that same year, Council was denied water by officials at the Kilby Correctional Facility after initiating a work strike. The Free Alabama Movement told Democracy Now that officials were trying to kill him.