I promised to update this blog when I learned more about Athena Cadence, the trans prisoner who was on a hunger strike because she was being housed in the male pod of a California prison.
Here’s a quick reminder of her story: Cadence was sentenced for misdemeanor assult. She started a hunger strike to fight for a change in her housing situation. At this particular penitentiery, trans prisoners are housed together, but within the men’s housing area of the jail – which is against jail policy. During her two-month stint of not eating solid foods, Cadence lost 40 pounds and went to the hospital three times. A judge released her last week and she went straight back to the hospital to start being reintroduced to a regular diet.
Cadence complained several times about harrassment by prison staff. The grievances she filed did nothing to change things during her stay, but jail officials say they are investigating her complaints.
There are two other trans inmates still being held there. I hope that while Cadence’s hunger strike didn’t change things for her personally, perhaps her actions will help them and future trans prisoners.
I’ll keep you posted!