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prison wire

The Uphill Road to Prisoners’ Rights

“Extralegal violence” against inmates has diminished as prisoners gained standing under U.S. law, but courts, lawmakers and prison administrators have carefully limited civil rights of the incarcerated—ushering in what some advocates call the modern era of hygienic, systematized and lawful cruelty, says a TCR op ed writer.

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prisoner

‘Taking a Leap’ to More Humane Incarceration

TRUE, a pilot program at a maximum security facility in Connecticut, offers prisoners a path back to normalcy, with educational programs and schedules they help devise. It’s one of several innovative experiments in changing correctional practices that reformers hope will change the face of U.S. prisons.

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prison

After Prison, Coming Home Can be the Toughest Ordeal of All

Prison is often just a stop along the road for individuals who have been struggling with victimization all their lives, says Bruce Western, author of a new book exploring returning inmates’ experiences. That’s why the justice system should rethink its approach to who it punishes—and how—he argued during a talk in New York Thursday.

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prison wire

Why America’s Prisons Need ‘Systemic Change’

On the 10th anniversary of the Second Chance Act, veteran corrections administrator and researcher Stefan LoBuglio says attitudes towards prisoner reentry have undergone a “sea change” since the 1990s. But in an extended chat with TCR, he warns of a retrenchment in programming that threatens the overall functioning of the U.S. corrections system.

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solitary confinement

Survivors of Solitary: Still Haunted by Memories

The time he spent in solitary confinement, trapped in a tiny prison cell with almost no human contact, is “going to be with me for the rest of my life,” says Rev. Matthew Burke. It’s a common refrain among those subjected to what many argue is a counterproductive form of punishment for already-incarcerated individuals—but their special needs are often overlooked in prisoner reentry services.

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solitary cell

Solitary Confinement Called ‘21st Century Slavery’

Eliminating the use of solitary is essential to transforming the modern culture of corrections, speakers at John Jay College said Wednesday. The college’s week-long examination of solitary confinement continues Thursday with a conference of leading researchers, legislators and advocates.