Seven Days in Solitary [5/22/2016]

• Under a bill just signed into law by Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services will be required to report annually on the number of people placed in solitary confinement. • A federal judge has finalized the terms of the settlement in Rasho V. Baldwin, which charged that Illinois […]

Seven Days in Solitary [5/8/2016]

• The Guardian continued its coverage of solitary confinement, publishing an article penned by Chelsea Manning and a video featuring NYC activist Johnny Perez. Also released was investigation into the use of isolation in Florida – where one in five prisoners with mental illness is held in solitary confinement. • A Florida man has spent […]

Solitary Confinement Out of Control in Florida Prisons

Florida has one of the highest rates of solitary confinement in the nation, at one eighth of the total state prison population. Florida’s usage of solitary is extreme not only in its scale, but also its implementation, with African Americans and individuals with mental illness significantly overrepresented in isolation. Florida’s prisons and juvenile detention centers […]

Seven Days in Solitary [1/14/2016]

• Excerpts from “Hell is a Very Small Place” were featured on In These Times and Longreads. The book was also reviewed by incarcerated whistleblower Chelsea Manning. The book, which is edited by Solitary Watch’s Jean Casella, Jim Ridgeway and Sarah Shourd, is the first to feature firsthand accounts of life in solitary. • Taylor Pendergrass of the […]

Settlement Limits Solitary Confinement for People With Mental Illness in Indiana's Prisons

A settlement reached last week in a class-action lawsuit regarding the solitary confinement of individuals with mental illness in Indiana’s prisons promises sweeping reforms that will affect hundreds of people. The suit against the Indiana Department Of Correction (DOC) has been ongoing since 2008, when the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana (ACLU) and the […]

Seven Days in Solitary [1/7/2016]

• VICE published a piece on the experiences of people with mental illness in solitary confinement. Journalist Paul Willis quotes the words of ADX prisoner Tommy Silverstein. “The mental anguish of 28 years of solitary confinement is worse than any physical pain I have ever suffered or imagined… The indefiniteness of my confinement makes my mental […]

Agreement Will Reduce Solitary Confinement of Mentally Ill in Oregon Prisons

Oregon corrections officials have agreed to reduce the isolation of people with serious mental illness in the Behavioral Health Unit (BHU) at Oregon State Penitentiary, settling over a year of discussions with Disability Rights Oregon (DRO), the state’s federally designated Protection and Advocacy System. The agreement, signed January 8, has the potential to significantly improve the […]

Judged Incompetent to Stand Trial, People with Mental Illness Still Languish in Pennsylvania Jails

Some of Pennsylvania’s most vulnerable citizens—people facing criminal charges who are not competent to stand trial because of mental disabilities—have begun a class action lawsuit over the state’s provision of mental health treatment. Last month, eleven plaintiffs, represented by the ACLU of Pennsylvania, sued the heads of a state agency and of the two state […]