No Place For Children

Please sign (and share!) the petition on change.org

Posted in Activism, Confined Kids, Insanity, Mental Health, Public Safety, Sensory Deprivation, SHU, Super-Max, Surviving Solitary, Torture, Torture for $$$ | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Extreme Sentencing Laws Are Not Smart

Originally posted on 4JusticeNow:

ACLU – Extreme sentencing laws have pushed the number of people in American jails and prisons to over 2.3 million — with more than half imprisoned for nonviolent crimes. These unnecessarily long sentences have led to bloated, overcrowded prisons and wasted billions of taxpayer dollars that could be better invested in our communities. 

Right now, we have a unique opportunity to rein in mass incarceration for people in the federal system. Congress members on both sides of the aisle have joined together in support of the Smarter Sentencing Act — a bill that could roll back some extreme federal mandatory minimum sentences.

If thousands of us put pressure on our congress members, we can reduce draconian sentencing laws that tear apart families.

Take action now: ask Congress to roll back federal mandatory minimum sentencing laws by scheduling and passing the Smarter Sentencing Act – before they leave for home…

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Huge Jail Serves as Nation’s Largest Mental Health Care Provider

Originally posted on Social Action:

Chicago’s Cook County Jail holds around 10,000 inmates, making it the largest jail in the United States. It’s also the nation’s largest mental health care provider, with an estimated 30 percent of inmates there diagnosed with a mental health disorder. RT Correspondent Liz Wahl takes you inside the jail that struggles to care for psychiatric patients amid overcrowding and limited resources.

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Central Park Five” – Wrongful Conviction: Defendant Speaks Out

Originally posted on Social Action:

Richard French Live’s Dominic Carter speaks with Raymond Santana, one of the “Central Park Five” about his experience with the wrongful conviction he suffered.

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Get 16-Year-Old Trans Girl “Jane Doe” Out Of Prison!

Originally posted on 4JusticeNow:

WatchDog.net – “A 16-year-old transgender girl in Connecticut has been incarcerated in an adult men’s prison for nearly a month — and she still hasn’t been charged or convicted of a single crime.

“Jane Doe” was living in a home for traumatized youth when authorities claim she attacked a staffer. But no criminal charges are even pending against her.

Instead, the teen has suffered in SOLITARY CONFINEMENT for weeks without treatment or educational training  — and instead of letting her go, the Department of Correction wants to send her to a men’s prison where she’ll be at high risk of abuse and sexual assault!

Please, join us in calling on Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy to release “Jane Doe” from prison and return her to state custody, placing her in a juvenile facility with kids of her gender if the state still plans to press charges!”

SIGN THE PETITION…

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Baby Dies in Jail After Mother Was Forced to Give Birth in Solitary With No Help: Lawsuit

Free Thought Project - “The plaintiff, Nicole Guerrero alleges in legal documents that:

“Wichita County denied (her) access to reasonable medical care … ignored her obvious signs of labor and constant requests for medical assistance, failed to conduct a physical examination … when she began to display obvious signs of labor, left (her) unattended in a solitary cell while she was obviously in labor, failed to transport (her) to the hospital for safe delivery, which ultimately caused (her) to deliver her baby alone in the solitary cell, and resulted in (her) suffering severe and likely permanent, physical and psychological injuries.”

Wichita County is not commenting on the case.

The lawsuit was filed Wednesday in federal court.

After being arrested on charges of drug possession on June 2, 2012, she was held in Wichita County jail. According to the lawsuit, after visiting her doctor for an infection on June 11, while still in custody, Guerrero says her doctor told her she was 8½ months pregnant.


Read more at Free Thought Project 

Posted in Abuse, Sensory Deprivation, Solitary Confinement, Surviving Solitary, Women Behind Bars | Leave a comment

Colorado Prison Director To Reform Solitary Confinement After Enduring It Himself

First thing you notice is that it’s anything but quiet. You’re immersed in a drone of garbled noise – other inmates’ blaring TVs, distant conversations, shouted arguments,” he wrote. “I couldn’t make any sense of it, and was left feeling twitchy and paranoid. I kept waiting for the lights to turn off, to signal the end of the day. But the lights did not go off. I began to count the small holes carved in the walls. Tiny grooves made by inmates who’d chipped away at the cell as the cell chipped away at them.”

The Free Thought Project- “Colorado prison inmates who have spent time in solitary confinement should prepare to see their conditions change after the new executive director of the state’s department of corrections said spending 20 hours in isolation has inspired him to reform it.

Rick Raemisch announced his intentions in an editorial for the New York Times, using the space to remind the public that prisoners who have committed even minor infractions in prison can often spend nearly two years in what is known as the solitary housing unit (SHU), or administrative segregation (ad-seg). 

I would spend a total of 20 hours in that cell,” he wrote. “Which, compared to the typical stay, is practically a blink. On average, inmates who are sent to solitary spend an average of 23 months there. Some spend 20 years.”

As reformers have tried to call attention to how inmates are punished behind bars, they have highlighted the numerous academic papers and medical studies that have found solitary confinement to be one of the most damaging mental experiences a person can endure. That seriousness is further exacerbated by the number of convicts who suffer from mental illness before they are ever placed in ad-seg.

Raemisch described how he fully immersed himself, writing of how that experience can shift a person’s mentality.

First thing you notice is that it’s anything but quiet. You’re immersed in a drone of garbled noise – other inmates’ blaring TVs, distant conversations, shouted arguments,” he wrote. “I couldn’t make any sense of it, and was left feeling twitchy and paranoid. I kept waiting for the lights to turn off, to signal the end of the day. But the lights did not go off. I began to count the small holes carved in the walls. Tiny grooves made by inmates who’d chipped away at the cell as the cell chipped away at them.”

The impact that leaves on a person not only wears on them through their time behind bars, Raemisch explained, but also when they re-enter society.” Read More At The Free Thought Project-

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Solitary Confinement May Dramatically Alter Brain Shape In Just Dayz, Neuroscientist Sayz

Originally posted on Moorbey'z Blog:

By Nicole Flatow

Solitary Confinement May Dramatically Alter Brain Shape In Just Days, Neuroscientist Says

A solitary cell at Angola prison in the early 1970s.A solitary cell at Angola prison in the early 1970s.

CREDIT: In The Land Of The Free

Solitary confinement has been called a “living death,” cruel and unusual, and torture. Studies of the prison practice of placing inmates in a solitary, often concrete windowless cell for 23 hours a day with almost no human contact, have found that the psychological impact is dramatic after just a few days.

A University of Michigan neuroscientist suggested Friday that the physical impact on the brain could be just as significant if not moreso, and could “dramatically change the brain” in just a matter of days. Speaking on a panel about solitary confinement, neuroscientist Huda Akil said inaccess to inmates has prevented much formal study on brain changes while held in confinement…

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