A Last Word on Solitary Confinement for 2020—and a Last Chance to Double Your Donation to Solitary Watch

Dear Donors, Readers, and Friends: We founded Solitary Watch more than a decade ago with the belief that accurate information and authentic storytelling could serve as powerful antidotes to ignorance and injustice, and help bring change even to a powerful and secretive institution like prisons. We started out as a small, shoestring operation—which to a […]

Seven Days in Solitary [12/28/20]

• USA Today published an opinion piece by solitary survivors Johnny Perez, Jack Morris, and Pamela Winn, all of whom now advocate for the rights of incarcerated people. All three recounted their own experiences being trapped in prison for the holidays. Perez, the director of the U.S. Prisons Program at the National Religious Campaign Against Torture, […]

Incarcerated Women Are Punished for Their Trauma With Solitary Confinement

Elizabeth Hawes is an award-winning prison writer and former editor of Reflector, the prison news magazine at Minnesota Correctional Institution (MCI)—Shakopee, where Hawes is serving her Life Without Parole sentence. In November 2020, Hawes won an award in the PEN America Prison Writing Contest. In 2018, Hawes completed the play Supernova, examining women’s incarceration and […]

Fourteen Days in Solitary [12/21/20]

• The New Orleans Lens reported that the non-profit Promise of Justice Initiative (PJI) released a report, claiming that prison administrators and staff responded inadequately to the coronavirus pandemic, causing unnecessary death and suffering. The report found, “Principally, correctional officials [in Louisiana] responded to COVID- 19 or exposure to the virus by placing people in solitary confinement or putting portions […]

Seven Days in Solitary [12/7/20]

• The Intercept reported that a group of immigrants held at the Etowah County Detention Center in Gadsen, Alabama banded together in July, all demanding coronavirus tests. But instead of providing testing, prison officials locked down the unit and transferred ten of the most vocal people to solitary confinement. One immigrant, Sebastian Abalo Cunna, wrote, […]