"Javier,* what has happened to your heart?" I asked. I brushed tears from my eyes as I glanced away from his tightly cuffed wrists.
Cindy Sanford is a self-proclaimed "tough on crime" advocate whose accidental meeting with a juvenile lifer strengthened her faith and led her into prison ministry. She is a registered nurse and the wife of a retired law enforcement officer. Cindy and her husband Keith are both official visitors for the Pennsylvania Prison Society.
There are currently 44 state and federal prisons in America classified as "supermax" prisons. These prisons house their entire incarcerated population in solitary confinement.
As "black sites," supermax prisons have been off-limits to the public and the press.
When the Washington State DOC’s former chief Bernard Warner describes solitary confinement, he doesn’t sugarcoat it. “I saw firsthand the conditions and environment in those housing units,” he tells TakePart.com. “It was pretty horrific.”
The Bureau of Justice Statistics reported that around 20 percent of prisoners have spent time in solitary confinement.
The North Carolina prison system announced that they will put an end to solitary confinement for juvenile offenders in the prison system. Historically, youth were placed in solitary confinement if they seriously violated prison rules.
By this September, the N.C. Division of Adult Correction and Juvenile Justice will launch a Youthful Offender Program that will provide education, mental and behavioral health counseling, life skills classes, and family and community reunification services.
Cindy Sanford is the author of Letters to a Lifer: The Boy ‘Never to be Released.’ Visit her website at letters2alifer.blogspot.com.
“Javier,* what has happened to your heart?” I asked. I brushed tears from my eyes as I glanced away from his tightly cuffed wrists.
As the newly appointed executive director of the Colorado Department of Corrections, Rick Raemisch spent the night of Jan. 23 in solitary confinement at a state penitentiary.
More than 12,000 prisoners in the California correctional system have entered into a hunger strike to protest solitary confinement practices in the state’s prisons. The hunger strike is the largest of its kind in California history, nearly doubling a similar hunger strike in 2011.
The appalling murder of Tom Clements, the executive director of the Colorado Department of Corrections, appears to be part of a growing trend of violence against criminal justice officials. Since the beginning of the year, brazen attacks have also taken the lives of the Kaufman County, Texas, district attorney, his wife, and a lead prosecutor.