San Francisco

San Francisco Hunger Strikers Honored at Community Celebration

Days after controversial police chief Greg Suhr resigned from his post, the activists who staged a hunger strike to oust him were honored at a food-laden community celebration. 

The five hunger strikers, composed of Ike Pinkston, Ilych Sato, Sellassie Blackwell, Maria Cristina Gutierrez and Edwin Lindo, became known as the "Frisco 5" after going without food for 17 outside the Mission police station.

The activists accepted the award in San Francisco Saturday at the annual Barrio Fiesta in the Soma District. The event was pegged as a celebration of Filipino food and culture. 

While there, the strikers said their next mission is to oust Mayor Ed Lee. 

"He's a coward who never talked to us when we asked to talk to him," Gutierrez said.

Lee was not at city hall when the strikers marched there with supporters on May 3, but he did attempt to speak to activists the day before outside their campsite at the police station. The strikers told reporters at the time that it was disrespectful for the Mayor to show up unannounced. 

They are taking Suhr's resignation as a huge victory.  

The activists believe that Suhr wouldn't have resigned following another deadly police shooting that happened Thursday had it not been for their hunger strike. 

"It was a victory for the people because (the police) knew if they didn't do something, they would have real trouble on their hands," said Gutierrez. 

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