It was also found by O’Keefe et al. (2013) that the Colorado Department of Corrections has a total of 19,279 inmates for state and private prisons including solitary confinement. They also found that Colorado State Penitentiary (CSP) has 756 beds available for inmates who are sent to this confinement facility. The rise in the use of solitary confinement raises major questions about the prisoner’s mental health as well as how ethical solitary confinement really is.
Greg Dobbs is a journalist, professional public speaker, and ABC News correspondent. Dobbs argues in agreeance of keeping solitary confinements in the prison systems for way of punishment. He first talks about Rick Raemisch’s, Department of Correction boss, experience as he stayed in solitary confinement for twenty hours at the Colorado Prison. Dobbs quoted Raemisch when he said, “I sat with my mind”. Raemisch brought a lot of attention to the evil side of solitary confinement says Dobbs. He then reminds the reader that convicted criminals
Solitary confinement has had a long history in the American prison system. America is the first country to adapt solitary confinement into the prison regiment. Pennsylvania had the first special housing units for inmates or “SHU”. When Europeans came to America to look at the new model for prisons in Pennsylvania they wrote reports describing to the European parliament on how prisoners were treated like caged animals. Many of them quickly realized that this was not what prisons were set out to accomplish. The purpose of a prison is to rehabilitate criminals and bring them back into society as an individual that has the best mental tools and skills to make their respective communities better. Putting inmates in solitary confinement for more than 48 hours can only lead to awful emotional pain and mental problems which can result in self-destructive behavior to regain the self-control that is being deprived through this process of isolation and expulsion.
Solitary confinement is occasionally used in most prison systems as a means to maintain prison order. Mainly for disciplinary punishment, or as a place to put inmates that are at escape risk, or a risk to themselves and prison order. Sometimes inmates that are sex offenders voluntarily choose solitary as a means of protection from other prisoners. Sometimes solitary can be used to hold pretrial detainees to prevent them from messing with witness, so they can’t try and force a confession. For 23 hours a day inmates are confined to the barren environment that is their cell with high surveillance (Smith, Peter Scharff, 2006.) Inmates have no social contact. Visits and phone calls are infrequent and highly restricted. Visits sometime only take place via video screens. The physical contact one experiences is limited to the interaction with prison guards, weather it be putting on restraints or taking them off.
Solitary confinement can cause mental distress to inmates. Solitary confinement causes problems with people’s heads, lives, and in some occasions makes the world more dangerous. The barbaric conditions of solitary confinement may cause or worsen depression, paranoia and anger. Scientist say if you ever go in solitary you will be damaged by it. If you survive it, it has impact on you. Solitary confinement is a big discussion all around the world, because of all these mental health issues. Inmates have nothing to do but just sit there. The barbaric condition only worsens men and women, they are lonely and drenched with depression in their heads. If there wasn’t solitary there would be less angry inmates walking out of the cells and going into the real world. Nikki Jenkins went straight out of solitary to be a free man, within a few weeks
What if something that is supposed to be keeping society safe is actually doing more harm than good? As it turns out, that might be the case with the solitary confinement of prisoners. For multiple days at a time prisoners are locked into a lonely cell as small as a bathroom stall, going days without any human contact or communication. While solitary confinement is expensive to taxpayers, it is costing even more in social terms, as it can debilitate inmates and cause serious mental harm in forms of anxiety, paranoia, and even hallucinations beyond their life behind bars. The argument ‘On the Edge of Humane’ by Keramet Reiter argues that the inhumane conditions of solitary confinement
Solitary Confinement has been used as a punishment, to keep the prisons secure. However, with the changing of opinions from a few decades ago, to present time, more people want less solitary confinement used. With also corrections policies changing over time has also changed the dynamic of how a younger person could be charged and sentenced, compared to an older person who is not a juvenile could be put into solitary confinement. More facts about the use of Solitary Confinement, the policy is up for debate. Starting with do I agree with the New York Times, The Living Death of Solitary Confinement?
There is a loss of privacy for the prisoner, even though they are all alone in the cell, guards are constantly watching them. They are there watching every move they make. It is often argued that solitary confinement creates a loss of freedom because the prisoner is already taken away from society, but then also isolated again in prison. The idea of being surrounded by four walls for 23 hours of the day is frightening. Therefore, many prisoners develop suicidal thoughts, personality disorders, and mental illnesses such depression, anxiety, paranoia, bipolar, schizophrenia, and claustrophobia (ConnectUS, 2015). It can also be stated that the purpose of solitary confinement is often not effective because instead of having someone there to help them process what they did, they are isolated. Prisoners in confinement simply end up just waiting for time to pass by instead of thinking about their
According to “Solitary Confinement: Common Misconceptions and Emerging Safe Alternatives” by Alison Shames, Jessa Wilcox, and Ram Subramanian on the Vera Institute of Justice, solitary confinement is often sentenced to “fulfill a prison’s or jail’s top priority: the safety of its staff and the incarcerated people under their care.” (Shames, Wilcox, & Subramanian, 2015). However, most inmates that are placed in solitary confinement are
Over the last couple of decades, prison systems have adopted the use of solitary confinement as a means of punishment and have progressively depended on it to help maintain obedience and discipline inside the prison structure. Solitary confinement is a form of incarceration in which a prisoner is isolated in a cell for multiple hours, days, or weeks with limited to no human contact. According to the American Civil Liberties Union, the United States represents only 5% of the world's population yet houses 20% of the world’s prisoners (ACLU). Two of the biggest problems with our modern day criminal justice system is the overwhelming number of people that are incarcerated in the United States and the overwhelming number of convicts who return
According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, Solitary Confinement is the confinement of a prisoner in a cell or other place which he or she is completely isolated from any and everyone. Merriam Webster also states that even some prisoners are held from 22.5 to 24 hours a day. Solitary confinement is sometimes referred to as isolation, segregation, separation, and cellular confinements so that it seems different from solitary confinement or too make it sound like a less harsh punishment. Solitary Confinement is a huge controversy in today’s society, although some might of forgot due to the fact that there’s an orange oompa loompa celebrity as our president, but this has been a problem since it was introduced in 1829. “In 1829, the first experiment in solitary confinement was at the Eastern State Penitentiary in Philadelphia. It was based on a Quaker belief that prisoners isolated in stone cells with only a Bible would use the time to repent, pray and find introspection.”(Timeline on NPR.org) A large population of people believe that solitary confinement is a violation against anyone 's human rights. On the other side of this argument, some people believe it is a necessary form of punishment and that it does not violate anyone’s human or constitutional rights. In my personal opinion, Solitary confinement violates both the 8th Amendment of the United States Constitution and Article five of the Declaration of Human Rights. I don’t understand how isolating someone for that
Solitary Confinement can actually cause mental health issues. People can literally go insane because of no interaction with people and being in isolation all the time. Some people get so bad that they have to be take and put in a straight jacket in a padded room. For 23 hours a day inmates are kept in a room a little smaller than a horse stable, and the only time they have to get out is when it’s time for them to be outside. Some prisons don’t even do that. All they do is give them food through a little whole in the door. (Front
Since the early 1800s, the United States has relied on a method of punishment barely known to any other country, solitary confinement (Cole). Despite this method once being thought of as the breakthrough in the prison system, history has proved differently. Solitary confinement was once used in a short period of time to fix a prisoners behavior, but is now used as a long term method that shows to prove absolutely nothing. Spending 22-24 hours a day in a small room containing practically nothing has proved to fix nothing in a person except further insanity. One cannot rid himself of insanity in a room that causes them to go insane. Solitary confinement is a flawed and unnecessary method of punishment that should be prohibited in the prison
Since the introduction of solitary confinement and the construction of super-max prison there has an on going debate on whether using these punishment is violating the 8th amendment and also explaining all the health risk caused by solitary confinement. Solitary confinement is when a prisoner is held in a cell alone and they spend between 22.5 and 24 hours a day. Prisoners have no contact with other inmates and guards are also have limited contact with inmates. Solitary confinement was first introduced in the mid-nineteenth century and it was believed that it would help reform prisoners. The ideology behind solitary confinement and super-max prisons was that prisoners would be locked up alone and left with nothing but their Bible and this would allow the prisoner to reflect on his actions and wrong doings and eventually reform into a law-abiding citizen. But soon after solitary confinement was put into place it became clear that solitary confinement did not meet there goal of reforming individuals but evidence proved it caused harmed to the prisoners physical and mental health. Besides being harmful to prisoner’s physical and mental health it was also very expensive to run super-max prisons. Many began to question whether it was morally and ethically correct to keep prisoners in solitary confinement for long periods of time at once. When solitary confinement was first introduced it was used as a short-term punishment for prisoner who committed severe offenses in prison.
The popular press article “Criminologist challenges effectiveness of solitary confinement” gave a brief overview of prisons using solitary confinement. Research by Morris (2015) is used to back up the information provided by the press article. Although using Morris’s (2015) research, the press article does not accurately reflect his findings. In fact, the press article did not provide any form of methods used or report any statistics of the results. However, the press article did provide his results without the statistics, but it relied mostly on other studies cited by Morris