Utah inmates held in maximum security hold hunger strike, demand relocation of gang leaders

Posted at 7:37 PM, Jul 31, 2015
and last updated 2015-07-31 21:37:45-04

UPDATE: The Utah Department of Corrections issued another press release Sunday, stating the inmates had sent a letter with six demands. Click here for details.

DRAPER, Utah – Forty-two inmates in a maximum security unit at the Utah State Prison refused breakfast Friday morning as part of a hunger strike, and the inmates have provided a list of demands that includes relocating gang members currently held in maximum security.

According to a press release from the Utah Department of Corrections, the inmates are all housed in the Uinta Facility at the Utah State Prison.

The 42 inmates notified staff they were beginning a hunger strike. All of the inmates involved are housed in maximum security and are “documented gang members”, according to the press release.

The inmates have given the Department of Corrections a list of demands that, “includes release of gang leaders now housed in a different maximum-security unit.”   Brooke Adams, Public Information Officer for the Utah Department of Corrections, said Sunday the inmates are demanding those inmates be released from maximum security and incarcerated elsewhere.

The release states officials are offering each inmate participating in the hunger strike the opportunity to be evaluated by medical personnel for baseline weight and other vital statistics so that their health can be monitored during the strike. The release states medical checks will be made again on Monday.

DOC personnel have also inventoried food items in each inmate’s cell to document potential nutritional intake, and the prison will continue to offer the inmates regularly scheduled meals while working to ensure routine operations at the facility are not interrupted by the hunger strike.