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rikers

At Rikers, Youth ‘Abandoned to Darkness’

Waiting for New York City authorities to fulfill their promise to close down the notorious Rikers Island detention facility is costing lives, warns psychologist Jeffrey Schwartz, who was commissioned to study conditions at the Rikers detention facility in 2015.

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bail

Ex-NYC Probation Chief: Why I Joined the ‘Mass Bailout’

On Oct 1, the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights group began a month-long “mass bailout” project in New York aimed at highlighting the inequalities of a system that forces the poor to remain behind bars before trial simply because they cannot afford money bail. Local DAs fumed, but a former NYC probation commissioner explains why he decided to participate.

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Rikers

NYC Moves Teens from Rikers Island: ‘Kids Will Be Treated Like Kids,’ says Mayor

The city Correction Department has completed the move of 16- and 17-year-olds off Rikers Island to juvenile facilities in what Mayor Bill de Blasio called “an historic day for criminal justice reform.” The long-awaited move comes as a new “Raise the Age” state law approved by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the legislature that treats 16-year-olds accused of crimes as juveniles instead of adults took effect Monday.

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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.

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jail

Women Shortchanged by Justice Reforms: Report

Criminal justice reform has not helped women to the same extent that it has benefited men, says a study from the Prisoner Reentry Institute at John Jay College. Drawing from women’s experience at Rikers Island, the report argues that reform should be trauma-informed and gender-responsive to account for women’s unique needs.