Seven Days in Solitary [8/2/2015]

by | August 2, 2015

The following roundup features noteworthy news, reports and opinions on solitary confinement from the past week that have not been covered in other Solitary Watch posts.

• Four House of Representatives members – two Republicans and two Democrats – are proposing legislation to study and make recommendations about the use of isolation in prisons across the country. “The Solitary Confinement Study and Reform Act will ensure that we have all the available data to better understand the impacts of solitary confinement so that we can develop and implement national standards to reduce the use of this practice in our nation’s prisons,” said Representative Bobby Scott of Virginia.

• A Nebraska judge has dismissed a lawsuit brought by Nikko Jenkins, who shot and killed four people in Omaha in August 2013 after he was released directly from solitary confinement. Jenkins had sought $1.7 million in damages, claiming that his time in isolation had severely damaged his mental health and that prison officials had failed to provide him with appropriate treatment.

• A reverend and a rabbi co-authored an op-ed on youth placement in solitary confinement for the Los Angeles Daily News. “Our religious traditions affirm the inherent human dignity of all people, and the particular importance of fostering the health and growth of children. Solitary confinement profoundly disrupts the developmental progress of youth. When we torture young people, we torture our future.”

• A woman has sued the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, allegedly she was raped by a prison guard and subsequently placed in involuntary protective custody against her will. Marya Miranda also said she did not report the sexual assaults because she feared retaliation, but that the incidents had been reported by another prisoner.


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