Hunger Strikers Intensify Protests and Plan Overnight Action: Fighting for our Lives!

Chicago, IL –(ENEWSPF)–August 3, 2013.  Hunger Strikers will update the media on their plans to intensify protests against Northwestern Memorial Hospital after the administration’s refusal to meet them. The next events include a community organizing meeting on Saturday at 6PM, and a large overnight protest at Northwestern Memorial Hospital beginning Sunday, August 5 at 3:00 PM. Strikers will also update the media on ongoing communication they having with several other area hospitals.

Hunger strikers will discuss the details of the next events:
* Saturday, August 3 at 6:00 PM, Our Lady of Guadalupe Mission: a planning meeting with community organizations supporting the hunger strike
* Sunday, August 4, beginning at 3:00 PM: Press Conference at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, followed by an overnight protest by hunger strikers, families and supporting organizations.


On Friday, August 2, a group of hunger strikers held a press conference in front of Northwestern Memorial Hospital and requested a meeting with the hospital administration. Participants in this press conference were severely ill patients, their children and elderly family members, and other members of the community. Instead of allowing a delegation to enter the building and hand a letter to a representative of the administration, Northwestern staff threatened to call the police on peaceful hunger strikers and their families.

“The response of the Hospital was very cruel and insulting” stated Father Jose Landaverde, one of the hunger strikers. “I was told that if we try to leave a letter for the hospital CEO, they will just throw it in the garbage”. Northwestern Memorial Hospital doctors are known as being national leaders in organ transplants. “By denying care, and even refusing to speak with undocumented patients, the administration are responsible for the death of many people in our community” added Landaverde.

“I am becoming very weak, and the aggressive attitude of Northwestern Memorial Hospital administration was shocking” stated hunger striker Blanca Gomez, a patient in desperate need of a kidney transplant. “But our determination is stronger than ever to continue the hunger strike” she added. Northwestern Memorial Hospital is one of the only hospitals in the region to offer liver transplants. Maria Isabel Mariano, a patient in critical need of a liver transplant, has many of her family members on hunger strike on her behalf. She stated: “I am not asking for special treatment. I only want a fair chance to fight for my life.”

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