Seven Days in Solitary [7/19/21]

•  A group of more than 20 men at David Wade Correctional Center in Louisiana went on a hunger strike last week to call attention to the torture-like conditions they are experiencing. They are part of a program in which incarcerated people from another prison—Elayn Hunt—are sent to David Wade for intensive disciplinary segregation. The […]

Seven Days in Solitary [7/12/21]

• A hunger strike by more than 20 incarcerated men in Pennsylvania prisons over prolonged solitary confinement came to an end after ten days on July 6, reports the Pennsylvania Capital-Star. The strikers are held in the Intensive Management Unit (IMU) at State Correctional Institution-Phoenix, which they allege is de facto solitary confinement. They declared […]

Fourteen Days in Solitary [5/31/21]

• “It’s hard to escape the conclusion that this isn’t just a place where people do time—it’s a place where people go to be broken.” A blog post on the website of Arnold Ventures provides an in-depth look at solitary confinement, the way it affects incarcerated people, their families, and correctional officers, and recent reforms […]

Seven Days in Solitary [1/25/21]

• The Richmond Times-Dispatch reported that the ACLU of Virginia reached a settlement with the Virginia Department of Corrections in a lawsuit filed on behalf of Nicolas Reyes. Reyes, an incarcerated man with mental illness, “allegedly was held in solitary confinement for more than a dozen years” because he does not speak English. Per the […]

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, […]

Seven Days in Solitary [11/23/20]

• The Boston Globe reported that the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. attorney’s office conducted an investigation, finding “reasonable cause to believe” that the Massachusetts Department of Correction (MDOC) has been violating the rights of people with mental health conditions by failing to provide them with proper care. MDOC has been placing people in […]

Seven Days in Solitary [10/26/20]

• The Durango Herald reported that a wrongful death lawsuit filed against Grants County, New Mexico claimed that county jail officials failed to properly monitor Fernando Rodriguez before he apparently killed himself in a solitary confinement cell. The lawsuit claims that officers failed to note his drug addiction and failed to document the needle marks in […]

Fourteen Days in Solitary [7/6/20]

• NPR’s Joseph Shapiro produced a piece that ran on “All Things Considered” about the use of lockdowns and solitary confinement around the country in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The piece focused on a recent report from the national Unlock the Box campaign, which is based on research and analysis by Solitary Watch, and found that […]

Voices From Solitary: Postcards From a Prison Pandemic

Incarcerated writer James Keown has been composing a series, “Postcards From a Prison Pandemic,” about the coronavirus’s impact on the medium-security MCI-Norfolk in Massachusetts, where he has spent the past two decades. Here we include excerpts from three of his posts. First, writing in April, he compared bracing for the impact of coronavirus to watching an […]

Despite Harsh Lockdowns, Nearly Half of Women in Massachusetts Prisons Caught the Coronavirus

In April, as coronavirus swept through MCI Framingham, Massachusetts’ sole women’s prison, Kimya Foust said she and a group of other incarcerated women who had been exposed were moved into a large, shared quarantine unit. “This place did not take the proper precautions to stop spreading this disease when it started,” she wrote. “I am […]