Seven Days in Solitary [3/18/18]

• The Tribune covered a protest this weekend calling for the San Luis Obispo Sheriff Ian Parkinson to step down from his re-election campaign, after a video exposed the conditions of the death of Andrew Holland, a mentally ill man being held in custody at San Luis Obispo County Jail in California. Holland had been […]

Seven Days in Solitary [5/29/16]

• Truth-Out published an op-ed entitled, “Solitary Confinement Is Used to Break People — I Know Because I Endured It.” Survivor Monica Cosby writes, “I’ve been out of solitary for over 11 years, but I still smell my cell. I still hear the correctional officers clanging the bars and jingling their keys and handcuffs. Because […]

Seven Days in Solitary [11/1/2015]

• The Center for Constitutional Rights has appealed a district court ruling in a case that seeks to challenge the constitutionality of the Bureau of Prison’s restrictive Communication Management Units (CMUs). CCR lawyer Rachel Meerpol said, “Communications Management Units impose harsh restrictions on prisoners’ communication with their families and with fellow prisoners for years at a […]

Seven Days in Solitary [7/26/2015]

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. • North Carolina reached a $2.5 million settlement with the estate of Michael Kerr, who died of dehydration in 2014 after being held in solitary confinement for 35 days. • According […]

Seven Days in Solitary [6/15/14]

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. • A federal Court of Appeals has ruled that the Indiana Department of Corrections erred in sending a man to solitary confinement for using a computer after prison officials asked […]

Holder Makes Obama Administration's First Public Statement on Solitary Confinement

In a weekly video message earlier this month, Attorney General Eric Holder made the first public statement on solitary confinement to emerge from the Obama White House (or, as far as we know, any U.S. presidential administration). A statement accompanying the 3-minute video on the Department of Justice’s website outlines the position taken by Holder–and, by implication, the DOJ […]

Seven Days in Solitary [4/7/14]

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. • Home Secretary Theresa May is again pressing the British High Court to allow the extradition of Haroon Aswat to the United States.  Last year, the European Court of […]

Seven Days in Solitary [3/16/14]

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. • The United Nations Human Rights Committee held a two-day hearing to evaluate US compliance with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and explicitly examined the extensive […]

Twenty Years After the Lucasville Uprising, Trying to Tell the Story

Guest Post by Staughton Lynd Staughton Lynd is a lawyer, historian, educator, author, and lifelong activist for peace and justice. For four decades, he and his wife, Alice Lynd, have worked on prisoners’ rights issues, especially in Ohio where they live. The Lynds were of counsel in a landmark 2001 class action suit, Austin v. Wilkinson, which challenged the constitutionality of […]

Guarding the Fortresses: How Prison Policies Limit Media Access to Solitary Confinement

Journalists face serious obstacles to reporting on prisons–and even more to uncovering the truth about solitary confinement. (See James Ridgeway’s essay “Fortresses of Solitude.”) Public oversight of governmental institutions, which can help to prevent corruption and abuse by those in power, is seen as a hallmark of an engaged, democratic citizenry. However, when it comes […]