Hungering for an end to detention
March 17, 2023
Today marks one month since the Hunger Strike in Golden State Annex and Mesa Verde detention centers began. The hunger strikers are bringing attention to the inhumane conditions in their detention centers and demanding release. GEO Group, the private company who runs these detention centers, in partnership with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), has responded with retaliation and violent removal of hunger strikers who were transferred to detention centers across the country. Thanks to those of you who sent an email or made a phone call voicing your concerns over these transfers and lifting up the demand for release. In response to community outrage, some of these men have been returned to Mesa Verde.
Over 80 people have participated in the Hunger Strike and as of today there are still 10 men who have survived on only water for the past month. In response to this heroic protest, Lakeshore has been invited to join the interfaith community in supporting these men in two ways. During Holy Week, there will be an Interfaith Solidarity Fast on behalf of the hunger strikers so they can take a break to nourish their bodies. Lakeshorians have agreed to fast on Monday, April 3 and we invite you to join us in fasting and/or prayer for the hunger strikers and the release of all who are in detention. On Tuesday, April 4, at 11 a.m. there will be an Interfaith Vigil outside of ICE headquarters in San Francisco lifting up all who have been harmed by immigration detention.
Here are variety of ways Lakeshore is participating in the work to end detention – we invite you to join us in prayer and action as we embody the gospel work of releasing the captives (Luke 4:18).
- Lakeshorians will travel to Yuba County Jail to celebrate the closure of Yuba Detention Center this Sunday, March 19. There will be blessing on this delegation during worship.
- I will be sharing about Lakeshore’s work for immigration justice and to end detention with the Baptist Peace Fellowship of North America/Bautistas por la paz at a webinar on March 30 at 4 p.m.
- Lakeshorians will participate in a one-day interfaith solidarity fast in support of the Hunger Strikers on Monday, April 3 (we will fast from sundown on April 2 through sundown April 3)
- Interfaith Vigil outside ICE headquarters on Tuesday, April 4 at 11 a.m.
Thank you for your ongoing prayers and support for immigrant justice.