Clallam Bay prison officials say normal operations resume Monday

CLALLAM BAY — The Clallam Bay Corrections Center will return to normal operations by Monday afternoon, the state Department of Corrections said Friday.

“Ongoing conversations between Clallam Bay staff and representatives of the incarcerated population over the last several weeks have resulted in positive operational changes that address the individuals’ concerns,” said Janelle Guthrie, spokesperson for the state Department of Corrections (DOC).

“More than 95 percent of the incarcerated individuals participated in dinner” on Thursday and visitation was to resume Saturday, she said.

Clallam Bay Corrections Center inmates went on a meal strike last Monday in protest over food and other conditions at the facility, refusing to eat their meals, and the prison responded by placing inmates on restricted-movement status, Guthrie said Tuesday morning.

Two inmate wives — one of which did not want to be identified — described the action to the Peninsula Daily News not as restricted movement but as a lockdown, a more restricted status under which inmates cannot receive phone calls and are confined to their cells. One wife said food packages were being withheld from the inmates.

Restricted movement is the suspension of normal movement in a prison, usually after a disturbance, according to www.doc.wa.gov.

Holly Phillips, the wife of an inmate, said prison officials were not allowing inmates access to food packages they had stored to sustain each other during the strike. Another wife of an inmate, who asked not to be identified, agreed.

Guthrie said that the prison had not been locked down and that the delivery of food packages was not affected by the prison’s response to the food strike.

Prison inmates conducted food strikes in April 2018 at Walla Walla Penitentiary and in February at Coyote Ridge Corrections Center in Connell.

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