"A federal court says the Lewis County Jail cannot restrict inmate mail to postcards."

"Human beings are not meant to be isolated. Here’s how two of them coped with prolonged solitary confinement."

"Avery Edison, who was held at a men’s jail for 20 hours, filed human rights complaints claiming she was discriminated and mistreated because of her gender."

"A 16-year-old transgender girl who was placed at York women’s prison in April will be moved next week."

Seven states are refusing to do anything.  Rick Perry wants you to know that the law ordering them to stop raping inmates is a violation of States Rights, unlike rape which isn’t a violation according to republicans, apparently.

"The federal government’s new rules make it cheaper for inmates to call long distance than locally."

"NPR Investigative Correspondent Joe Shapiro tells host Michel Martin about the growing use of fines in the criminal justice system."


"There are, then, four principles by which we may determine whether a particular punishment is ‘cruel and unusual:

* The “essential predicate” is “that a punishment must not by its severity be degrading to human dignity,” especially torture.

* A severe punishment that is obviously inflicted in wholly arbitrary fashion.” (Furman v. Georgia temporarily suspended capital punishment for this reason.)

* A severe punishment that is clearly and totally rejected throughout society.”

* A severe punishment that is patently unnecessary.”

- Justice Brennan, Furman v. Georgia, 408 U.S. 238 (1972)
(Found Via Wikipedia - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cruel_and_unusual_punishment)


Sexual assault in prisons is treated as part of the punishment. It’s joked about, because well…that’s what you get! It’s part of the deterrent, and clearly if people didn’t want to get sexually assaulted, they wouldn’t get themselves arrested.

Imagine if a judge actually ordered that, though. Stood up in front of everyone and said, “I sentence you to (x) number of years to being sexually assaulted and unprotected while living in a corrupt system far away from where the public eye can easily see you being tortured. After you are let out, if we let you out, you will be nearly unemployable - thus leaving you susceptible to the circumstances that tend to lead people to getting arrested.”

It would be helpful to just come out and admit, because then we could say, “That’s clearly Cruel and Unusual punishment.” But since it’s not an ‘official’ part of the system, it’s not technically part of the punishment.

The forces that converged to make this system a reality are geniuses.

(via greenwickpress)

"A federal settlement to eliminate the use of seclusion on juvenile offenders is the first of its kind."

"PROVIDENCE — It’s long been standard practice to count prisoners as residents of the city or town where they are incarcerated, but Rhode Island took a step Tuesday toward breaking from that tradition.Rather…"

"A bill that would ban the use of restraints on pregnant female inmates in labor and also require more pre- and post-natal medical care for incarcerated women awaits the governor’s signature."