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How a Massive California Prison Hunger Strike Overhauled Solitary Confinement

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JoeBill Muñoz and Lucas Guilkey's new documentary is "The Strike." (Photo courtesy of JoeBill Muñoz and Lucas Guilkey)

In 2013, inmates at Pelican Bay, a supermax California prison designed to hold large numbers of inmates in isolation, went on a hunger strike to protest indefinite solitary confinement. The hunger strike grew to include nearly 30,000 California prisoners, and led to an overhaul of prison policies. A new documentary “The Strike” chronicles the prisoner-led resistance and features interviews with men who spent decades in confinement in tiny isolated cells. We talk  about the historic hunger strike and the evolution of solitary confinement policies in the state and country.


JoeBill Muñoz, director and producer, The Strike; award-winning documentary filmmaker; former KQED video intern in 2018

Lucas Guilkey, director and producer, The Strike

Jack Morris, former prisoner in Pelican Bay; program manager, the Re-entry Integrated Services, Engagement and Empowerment Program (RISE) at St Johns Community Health (SJCH) in Los Angeles, where he serves the formerly incarcerated community

Dolores Canales, director of community outreach, The Bail Project


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