Solitary Confinement in US Prisons: A Research-Based Primer

Picture of solitary confinement cell behind bars

A recent primer released by the Good Men Project, written by Clark Merrefield, is a response to estimates that on any given day, there are tens of thousands of prisoners held in solitary confinement in the U.S. What is solitary confinement and why is it used? The primer explains that solitary prisoners are typically confined […]

Solitary Confinement Is An Intersectional Issue

left: black and white image of a prison cell with a small mattress, toilet, and sink. right: blue and black copy of photo of protestors holding a sign that says, "California families to abolish solitary confinement"

Reporting from Mother Jones: “Tracie Bernardi Guzman’s recent experience with Connecticut’s governor sheds light on the challenges faced by advocates fighting to end solitary confinement. In 2018, she shared her personal story with Ned Lamont, expressing her hope for criminal justice reform. However, in 2021, when state lawmakers passed a bill to limit solitary confinement, […]

“Hope from behind bars, the fight to end Solitary Confinement in Texas”

“This story is a candid look at what it’s like to spend decades in isolation, and the struggle to rehabilitate those who have experienced it. ‘It is torture, and I think the torture begins mentally,’ said Dennis Hope. For 32 years, Dennis Hope has been in prison. ‘When you begin to look at yourself like […]

Lousiana: Juvenile offender with mental illness tried as an adult, sent to solitary confinement on death row.

Placing inmates in solitary confinement for their physical and/or mental safety is a form of medical incarceration. It’s extremely counter-productive due to the astronomical exacerbation of mental illness done by solitary, especially for youth. According to reporting by eyewitness investigator Mike Perlstein, Alonzo Defillo Jr. ended up on death row at the nation’s bloodiest prison, […]

Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice hosts states working toward juvenile justice reform

“IDJJ is hosting cohorts of juvenile justice administrators and practitioners from other states because of its designation as a National Promising Practice site. The Center for Juvenile Justice Reform at Georgetown, the Center for Children’s Law & Policy, and the Council of Juvenile Justice Administrators have formed a collaborative to reduce the use of isolation and promote best practices […]

A Prison Used Solitary Confinement to Force a Trans Man to Undergo a Genital Exam, Lawsuit Alleges

Sillouette of an individual with short hair/shaved head, behind a leafy plant on the ground, facing a window with a blurred view of tall buildings.

Content Note: Article contains detailed descriptions. It’s demeaning enough that (pseudonymn) John Smith was subject to invasive exams that violate the federal Prison Rape Elimination Act, or PREA, which prohibits jails and prisons from conducting exams solely to determine someone’s genital status. After multiple parties inspected his genitals, he finally refused further exams, and according […]