Voices from Solitary: In Prisons, Mass Solitary Confinement Turns Quarantine Into Punishment

John Hovey, a 54-year-old man who has been incarcerated since the age of sixteen, and is currently serving a life sentences at Monroe Correctional Complex in Washington State, wrote the following piece in March 2021. He describes his experience of solitary confinement as “quarantine” during the COVID-19 pandemic. His entire unit was moved to the […]

Voices From Solitary: This Inhumane Project Called Solitary Confinement

Ronald Clark, 53, is currently held on Florida’s Death Row at Union Correctional Institution in Railford. Death-sentenced individuals held by the Florida Department of Corrections are confined in a 63-square-foot cell for upwards of 23 hours a day, and subjected to additional isolation for disciplinary infractions. On his blog The Death Row Poet, Clark writes […]

Voices from Solitary: Everyday Torture

Christopher Blackwell, 40, is serving a 45-year prison sentence in Washington State. He co-founded Look 2 Justice, an organization that provides civic education to system-impacted communities and actively works to pass sentencing and policy reform legislation. When the COVID pandemic hit his prison, he was on the same unit as Tim Pauley (who has given […]

Voices From Solitary: Double Doors

Ethan Macks, 30, originally of Flagstaff, Arizona, began serving a seven-year sentence in the Arizona State Prison Complex at Yuma in 2018. He was recently released from a ten-month term in a maximum-security solitary confinement unit. In this piece, Mack describes a setup colloquially known as “double doors,” which in the name of “security” adds […]

Voices from Solitary: It Never Gets Easier

The following piece was written by Chez-Armand Blackwell, who is currently serving a fifteen-year sentence for burglary at the Florida State Prison in Raiford. Blackwell has spent the past twelve years in solitary confinement, in what the Florida Department of Corrections (DOC) calls Close Management. In 2019, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) filed a […]