Aging Alone: Uncovering the Risk of Solitary Confinement for People Over 45

Guest Post by Lucius Couloute The following post comes from the always invaluable Prison Policy Initiative, which documents and publicizes how mass incarceration punishes our entire society, through groundbreaking research, innovative media work, and intersectional organizing.  Author Lucius Couloute is PPI’s Policy & Communications Associate Visit them at www.prisonpolicy.org. = = = = = = = = = = = = […]

New Report Shows Devastating Impact of Solitary Confinement on Incarcerated People with Physical Disabilities     

The American Civil Liberties Union today released an extensive report on people with physical disabilities in solitary confinement. Caged In: Solitary Confinement’s Devastating Harm on Prisoners with Physical Disabilities provides both statistical and anecdotal evidence that people with physical disabilities, who are dramatically overrepresented in prisons, are subject to abysmal and flagrantly illegal treatment while […]

New Report Documents Devastating Effects of Solitary Confinement on Mental Illness

A new report released yesterday highlights the disturbing use of solitary confinement on incarcerated individuals with mental illness. Locked Up and Locked Down: Segregation of Inmates with Mental Illness, released by Disability Rights Washington, details the widespread practice of housing men, women, and children with mental illness in solitary confinement. The report shows that prisons […]

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 […]

After 33 Years in Solitary Confinement, Former Black Panther Russell Shoatz Will Have His Day in Court

Russell “Maroon” Shoatz, a former Black Panther who escaped from Pennsylvania prisons twice in the 1970s, was held in solitary confinement for nearly thirty-three years, including twenty-two consecutive years, from 1991 to 2014. During that time, Shoatz was in confined to his cell, in complete social isolation, for 23-24 hours a day. He contends that his time […]

Presidential Prison Politics

As prison issues and criminal justice reform become increasingly popular items on the nation’s political agenda, the 2016 presidential candidates are getting in line. Most have shifted their prison policies toward reform in recent years (or months), and almost all say they support basic reforms like reduced mandatory minimums for nonviolent drug offenders. Nonetheless, headlines […]

Off the Block

As the first of several journeys for Solitary Watch’s Alternatives Project, my colleague Aviva Stahl and I spent two weeks in Britain, visiting prisons and interviewing officials of HM Prison Service and its oversight bodies, advocates, lawyers, scholars, and currently and formerly incarcerated individuals. Our aim was to discover how solitary is—and is not—used in […]