The Violent Consequences of Solitary Confinement


Inmates who spend time in solitary confinement are nearly seven times more likely to try to hurt or kill themselves than those who are never sent to solitary, according to a new American Journal of Public Health study of self-harm cases in New York City's jails.

About 7.3 percent of 244,699 New York City incarcerations between January 2010 and January 2013 involved solitary confinement, but that group accounted for 53.3 percent of the 2,182 self-harm incidents during that time period.

Among the 103 potentially fatal incidents, 45 percent occurred among the population who had spent time in solitary.

The city's Department of Correction recently instituted new guidelines that limit the use of solitary confinement, but it is still used in certain cases.

The Crime Report reported on Wednesday that corrections directors in three states are moving to decrease the use of solitary confinement and New York legislators recently proposed a 15-day cap on the punishment.

Read the full American Journal of Public Health study HERE.

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