News Roundup #1: Solitary Confinement

solitary confinement cellFebruary 20: My Night In Solitary, (NY Times) Colorado Springs – At 6:45 p.m. on Jan. 23, I was delivered to a Colorado state penitentiary, where I was issued an inmate uniform and a mesh bag with my toiletries and bedding(more)

February 25: Solitary Confinement Costs $78K and Should Be Curbed, Critics Say, (NPR) – Former prisoners spoke about the effects of solitary confinement Tuesday, in a congressional hearing aimed at banning the treatment for some inmates. The federal push to reduce solitary confinement is being led by Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., who calls it “a human rights issue we can’t ignore.”(more)

February 25: No Solitary Confinement for Minors, Mentally Ill, (USA Today) Washington, D.C. – Leaders of a Senate panel called on federal and state prison authorities Tuesday to ban the use of solitary confinement for juveniles, pregnant women and the mentally ill as part of a national reassessment of the harshest method of incarceration(more)

February 26: The Plot From Solitary, (NYMag.com) – Four alleged members of rival gangs launched a hunger strike 30,000 strong from the isolation of their Supermax cells. Was the prison system that corralled them not strong enough, or is solitary confinement an impossible idea?(more)

March 1: Movement to End Solitary Confinement Gains Force, (NBC News) – In the small, dark world of solitary confinement, an inmate’s basic needs can go neglected for months – and many are starting to wonder for what purpose(more)

March 4: Former Rikers Island Youth Opens Up About Solitary Confinement, (Colorlines) – As a teen Ismael Nazario did time in New York City’s Rikers Island prison for assault and robbery charges. “Without being convicted he says he spent a total of 300 days in solitary. The longest stretch was four months,” reports Daffodil Altan for NewsHour(more)

March 15: After 20 Hours in Solitary, Colorado’s Prisons Chief Wins Praise, (NY Times) Cañon City, CO – The cells where inmates are kept in solitary confinement at the state penitentiary here are 7-by-13-foot boxes arranged in semicircular tiers. When the warden, Travis Trani, heard that Rick Raemisch, Colorado’s new chief of corrections, intended to spend a night in one of them, he had two reactions(more)

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