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Government Shutdown Sparks Hunger Strike Inside Manhattan Jail

As the country enters its 27th day of the unfair government shutdown, several inmates inside a Manhattan detention center have settled to participate in a hunger strike after family visits were revoked for the second week as a result of limited staff members.

As reported by the New York Times, inmates at the Metropolitan Correctional Center or M.C.C have rejected their breakfast and lunch meals. The facility, which holds about 800, is one of the most crucial in the federal prison system and has housed a few notorious names,  including Mexican drug leader El Chapo and terrorists.

Federal public defender Sarah Baumgartel stated that she was informed of the hunger strike from a prisoner she represents. Baumgartel refused to name the inmate out of fright he’d be singled out. “They have already refused a meal — I believe they refused breakfast and lunch.”

In addition to revoked family visits, the distribution of medication to inmates in need has also been a concern. The New York Times  states an attorney inside a federal court was “informed” that because of the shutdown, there are issues with prescribing medication.”

On January 16th, Bureau of Prisons lawyer Adam Johnson emailed defense lawyers reporting “due to staff shortages,” attorneys would not be able to communicate with their clientele at Brooklyn’s Metropolitan Detention Center. “We regret the inconvenience and will notify you immediately once visiting resumes.”

The partial government shutdown is at a standstill amid Donald Trump’s need for financing to build a wall by the U.S- Mexican border and a recently elected Democratic Congress rejection. 

Ever since surpassing 800,000 workers have gone without compensation.

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