Seven Days in Solitary [11/16/20]

ā€¢ The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that a second wave of the coronavirus is hitting Pennsylvania prisons and jails, despite a statewide lockdown in March, keeping people locked in their cells for over 23 hours a day. Claire Shubik-Richards, the executive director of the Pennsylvania Prison Society said, ā€œWhat weā€™re seeing is a full-blown resurgence of […]

Seven Days in Solitary [9/21/20]

ā€¢Ā According to My Twin Tiers, five people held at the Allegheny County Jail filed a lawsuit through the Abolitionist Law Center (ALC) and the Pennsylvania Institutional Law Project, claiming that the conditions at the facility violate their rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act and the 14th Amendment. The ALC conducted a survey of people […]

Seven Days in Solitary [10/28/18]

ā€¢ San Jose Inside reportedĀ on the settlement of the 2015Ā class action lawsuit Chavez v. County of Santa Clara, which challenged the use of solitary confinement at San Joseā€™s Main Jail as unconstitutional. The lawsuit alleged that many of those held at the Main Jail had not yet been convicted of the crime with which they […]

Seven Days in Solitary [2/5/2017]

ā€¢ Ā The Allegheny County Jail has eased up on discipline and worked towards releasing incarcerated pregnant women, according to an article published in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Five people locked up at Allegheny sued the jail last December, on allegations that they had been place in solitary, sometimes for weeks, for minor offenses like having too […]

Seven Days in Solitary [9/21/2014]

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. ā€¢ AP reporter Adam Geller published an investigation into why so many individuals with mental illness are held in solitary confinement in local jails across the country. He notes, […]

Seven Days in Solitary [2/23/14]

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. ā€¢ A high-profile hearing on solitary confinement will be held on Tuesday, February 25, by the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights, chaired by […]

Seven Days in Solitary [11/10/13]

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. ā€¢ Lance Tapley of The Portland Phoenix provides readers with a look inside Maine State Prison’sĀ Special Management Unit, which he describes as “a physical manifestation of the banality of […]

Reducing Solitary Confinement in Maine

In theĀ latest issue of theĀ Portland Phoenix, Lance Tapley interviews Maine’s new corrections commissioner, Joseph Ponte.Ā Before Ponte’s appointment,Ā a grassroots movement in MaineĀ raised public awareness around use and abuse of solitary confinement in Maine State Prison’s Special Management Unit (SMU), and led to an attempt to pass legislation limiting solitary. Since he was installed last winter,Ā Ponte has […]

Maine Cuts Supermax Population, Reforms Solitary Confinement Practices

As Lance Tapley reported last week, recent developments in Maine demonstrate the difference that reform-minded leadership can make to prison conditions, including theĀ use andĀ abuse of solitary confinement. Even as it has grown exponentially over recent decades, the use of solitaryĀ has generally been treated not as a human rights issue but as a matter of correctional […]