PORTLAND, Ore. - A Portland man on a hunger strike in front of City Hall has decided to start eating again.
Cameron Whitten says he will end the strike Thursday morning - 55 days after it began. He is now 35 pounds thinner.
A prominent figure in last fall's Occupy Portland movement, the 21-year-old activist started the strike last month to highlight housing issues.
"There are less safe places for Portlanders to sleep, which contributes to crime, mental health issues, lower quality of living and death," he said in a news release announcing the end to his hunger strike.
Whitten began his crusade just weeks after losing the May election to become mayor. His hunger strike outside City Hall caught the attention of city officials, local media and he gained a bevy of supporters.
Whitten plans to hold a press conference on the steps of City Hall Thursday at 10 a.m. where he will take a bite of solid food for the first time in weeks.
There's no word on what he plans to eat for his initial post-strike meal but it likely won't be a hamburger or a steak. Whitten said it will be something vegan.
Cameron Whitten (right) is seen on a sidewalk in downtown Portland. Photo by Shannon L. Cheesman, KATU.com Producer/Reporter.