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Immigrant Detainees End Hunger Strike with Victory in OregonSalem-News.com
Local Clergy to Meet with Immigrant Detainees at NORCOR
(The Dalles, Ore.) - Immigrants detained at the Northern Oregon Regional Corrections Facility have broken their 6-day hunger strike after NORCOR administrator Bryan Brandenburg committed to the hunger strikers to provide microwaves to heat their meals, radios and access to programs that inmates are offered.
“Why does it have to come to this? We’ve been asking for these things for five months. Why did we have to do a hunger strike?” asked one of the hunger strikers yesterday.
“We need to stick together as people and fight for what we want to believe in. We can’t let them do whatever they want to us.”
Community members in The Dalles will continue their daily rallies today, May 5th from 5-6:30PM.
On Saturday, May 6th from 12-2PM, organizations from across the state will join the growing Gorge ICE Resistance coalition in a rally to demand that Brandenburg honor his commitments to the hunger strikers, and an end to NORCOR’s contract with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
“We are relieved that the hunger strikers are eating again, but sorely disappointed it took six days without food and very little water to get NORCOR to provide microwaves and radios,” says Solea Kabakov of Gorge ICE Resistance.
“NORCOR has a reputation for its horrible treatment of those inside its walls despite its big budget.
"The Dalles is a wonderful community of people who take care of each other, and I question whether NORCOR shares our values and uses our tax dollars appropriately.”
Two of the hunger strikers reported that they had children outside, and had been in detention for over two years.
Four local clergy, members of the Gorge Ecumenical Ministries, will visit detainees held in NORCOR this morning. They will speak with those who participated in the hunger strike to hear their stories and express ongoing community support to hold NORCOR accountable for its relationship with ICE and treatment of immigrant detainees.
Clergy visiting ICE detainees today include: Reverend Red Stevens of St Paul’s Episcopal Church in The Dalles, Pastor Tyler Beane Kelly of Zion Lutheran Church in The Dalles, Reverend Judy Zimmerman of Mid-Columbia Unitarian Universalists and Pastor Kelly Ryan of Bethel United Church of Christ in White Salmon.
NORCOR is a rural jail in The Dalles. It is a public jail funded by Hood River, Wasco, Sherman and Gilliam Counties.
NORCOR’s participation in federal detention and deportation processes violates ORS 181A.820, which prevents state and local police from using Oregon public resources in enforcing federal immigration law.
Friday, May 5, 5-6:30pm and Saturday, May 6, 12-2pm: Rally in support of NORCOR ICE detainees (211 Webber St; The Dalles, OR 97058). Gorge ICE Resistance is a coalition of several local organizations throughout the Columbia Gorge who have formed to support the NORCOR hunger strikers, including Gorge Ecumenical Ministries, Somos Uno, Hood River Latino Network, Mid-Columbia Community Action Network, Gorge ReSisters, Community Action Network, Grassroots IMPACT, Protect Oregon Progress and more.
Source: Gorge ICE Resistance
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