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  #1  
Old 07-19-2017, 07:07 PM
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Default How do I start a petition for No more solitary confinement?

How to start a petition for taking away solitary confinement in all prisons
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Old 07-19-2017, 07:09 PM
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Much attention has been brought to the extensive misuse of solitary confinement. It may be wise to seek out those efforts and add your voice rather than splintering off attention to yet another petition.

Be aware that solitary does serve a purpose. The focus of solitary reform isn't to end it, but rather improve its usage. Solitary confinement saves lives. I would hate to see them remove that option for people who need it.

Here are some places to start:
Solitary Watch
ACLU
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Old 07-19-2017, 07:19 PM
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Default I strongly disagree

You don't take a mental illness young man to the wrong facility and stick him in solitary for 86 days, you email dhhs mental health division with concerns of your loved one and no one does anything not even a well check on him and he returns home 90 days later 35 pounds lighter than he went in and crazy out of his head because he was neglected of mental health treatment. It took 9 police officers to pin him down and place him in a mental facility. S. C. Ruins lives that's what it does, i know it for a fact.
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Old 07-19-2017, 07:25 PM
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Default Have you ever been in solitary confinement

Have you ever been in s.c. It drives you crazy ..it's a set up to drive you crazy so you can't manage when you are release into society and you do something out of character just to be arrested again and back to jail, then send to a mental facility,then back to jail it a revolving door and every one is getting paid except the mental illness patient. I would treat a dog they way they treated him.....what if this was your son,father,brother,uncle,etc for not reporting a address this is okay with you may god soften your heart along with everyone else who sees no wrong. This is why i won't stop fighting
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Old 07-19-2017, 07:38 PM
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If he was to report an address, it was his responsibility to report it. Most of us here have a loved one in prison, some serving years & years. We are not hard-hearted and understand a whole lot more than you're giving us credit for: My Mr did almost an entire year in the hole, twice.

8 lawyers declined to take your son's case (not yours. Your son's) for a reason...I know you're upset, but there are apparently issues in play that we are not privy to

Where is your son now? At home? Or in a mental facility? I hope he improves quickly and completely
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Old 07-19-2017, 07:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by patchouli View Post
If he was to report an address, it was his responsibility to report it. Most of us here have a loved one in prison, some serving years & years. We are not hard-hearted and understand a whole lot more than you're giving us credit for: My Mr did almost an entire year in the hole, twice.

8 lawyers declined to take your son's case (not yours. Your son's) for a reason...I know you're upset, but there are apparently issues in play that we are not privy to

Where is your son now? At home? Or in a mental facility? I hope he improves quickly and completely
You are correct there is whole lot more to this story and mental illness is real, when you lose yourself and you're over 21 there isnt much a parent can do. I f i was to tell you the entire story it would bring you to tears bottom line he was treated in a inhumane manner and i will seek justice for him and the others that are going through or went through what he did. It will all come out. I pray that you or anyone else will have to go through this wron is wrong right is right.
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Old 07-19-2017, 10:27 PM
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As noted. single-cell housing has its place. That place is protection of the population from a particular inmate in some instances and in other instances, protection of an inmate from the population. This case actually sounds like it had elements of both in a manner that made him a danger in the general population.

Frustrations aside, how would YOU have proposed the State house him?

What proposals do you have in lieu of single-cell housing for those that cannot be housed in population?
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Old 07-22-2017, 08:39 PM
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Whenever solitary confinement is discussed, many many people start angrily underlining what is the alternative for those who cannot fit to the general population, then? All right, nothing against this aspect being discussed, a very good topic actually. Yet could we also discuss about the fact that thousands of men are in solitary even if it is not necessary: not according to their behaviour, and against their will. Just because...someone has decided so. That IS a real issue in US, and that must be addressed continuously. That is a form of torture - even the United Nations is pushing US for this, and that is rare. So there is a real serious issue in there.

Now, how about those cases who 'must' be kept in solitary? Firstly, if the US prisons were managed in a less torturous and humiliating way, a far smaller amount of prisoners would become this disturbed as so many unfortunately are. The worse the prison conditions are, the more violence, gangs, mental issues and security issues it causes. Which leads to the vicious circle of even harsher conditions and harsher laws of jungle among the inmates.

In many European countries prisons are much more human - still they are awful places and by no means vacation homes I can assure! - and this has created a situation where solitary is rare, as it is not much needed. Under humane treatment inmates remain calmer, less violent, less disturbed. Yes and there are tons of research to showcase the effect of different prison conditions.

Why are US prisons then that harsh in many ways? Because the system keeps itself occupied and necessary. When inmates are kept on the brink all the time in various ways, and the tiniest of errors are punished sevely, the anxiety, aggression and distress levels are guaranteed to remain high. And the more violations against rules happen. And hey! More and more facilities, personnel etc. resources are needed, because inmates are 'so horrible'.

The inmates in Europe are Homo Sapiens, too, their crimes are similar as well. Yet no such massive issue with security and peace inside.

Most European prisons are horrible places in any outsider's view, and inmates surely loathe them. So no reason to pull any cards saying being locked in them is not an adequate punishment. Oh yes it is! But they are not mental torture houses. They are strict, yet reasonable.

I hope the overall wicked policy in the US, the mass incarceration policy would be discussed more within our society. And perhaps we here could figure out what could we do about it together, to act?

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Old 07-22-2017, 09:23 PM
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Originally Posted by AstridOfNorth View Post
I hope the overall wicked policy in the US, the mass incarceration policy would be discussed more within our society. And perhaps we here could figure out what could we do about it together, to act?
Solitary in excess is inhumane. I don't think that's even a question. But to distill the reasons for its use down to cruelty and torturous indifference isn't an accurate picture, either. It isn't all about locking up the incorrigible.

Incarceration in the US has become a poor stand-in for proper mental health care. I can understand the OPs frustration. I don't know the stats between Europe and the US on mental health treatment and the intersection with incarceration, but if there's a substantial difference in how mental healthcare is handled in Europe, it creates a significant challenge in making a comparison between incarceration systems. If we removed mental health care from the US prison structure, we'd no doubt have a very different picture here, as well.
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Old 07-22-2017, 09:47 PM
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Mental issues are most likely among the biggest reasons behind crime everywhere, plus adding up while incarcerated. Traumas and childhood family life play a massive role in what we become, and we tend to inherit proneness to violence and agression, too, from our surroundings.

Mental health care, especially concerning prisoners, is in crisis in Europe, too.

Yet the inhumane prison conditions in the US is something that is widely recognised, and up to some extent being addressed to - albeit terribly insufficiently. Independent organisations, researchers, many high ranking correctional officers are constantly bringing this to the public attention and expressing their concerns, also on its impacts on the mental wellbeing of prisoners.

Though many committing crimes suffer of mental issues and receive no adequate care, it is certain that inhumane and torturous atmosphere & practices also cause mental health destruction even if one was more or less ok before incarceration. This is also a widely researched and discussed fact among the above mentioned. -You enter prison sane, walk out insane.

Even if removing the lacks in mental health care in the US and esp in US prisons, the US prison conditions and practises constantly violate human rights, as human rights are widely understood by the western democratic societies. And that creates just more problems, instead of solving them. The system is broken.
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Old 07-23-2017, 11:59 AM
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OP: check out solitarywatch.com It is a place you can find a lot of information on the uses and abuses of solitary confinement. Some of those stories will chill you beyond what you think you already know about this stuff from your own experiences. There's support to be had there as well.

Look, when it comes to the mentally ill and the courts, there's not a very good relationship. Legislators and governors continue to defund mental health, reducing the number of available beds. Police, called out on a crime even as trivial as trespass, make the criminal arrest and proceed with criminal booking. Once in the system through the criminal door, tending to his mental health needs is low on the priority list. High on the priority list is keeping the facility safe - the other inmates, the guards, and preventing him from harming himself. He has to advocate for medical treatment.

Nobody is going to take him from the criminal side to the mental health side and civilly commit him to a forensic psych hospital outside of a determination that he's not competent to stand trial. He can be actively hallucinating and delusional and still be competent to stand trial.

Now it that initial call to the authorities was not a criminal call but a wellness call, then the call may stay wellness, and the on the ground, on the fly assessment will be whether he's a danger to himself or others, and hospitalization - assuming the police do not witness him doing a crime. But if they are called out on a crime call, he goes through the criminal proceeding.

Petitions that do not promote a solution do nothing.

For individuals, here's what helps:
1. do a psychiatric advanced directive while he's competent to do so. This allows him agency in determining how he wants to be treated should he become incompetent to make those decisions himself.

2. review your state and county mental health processes. Does your county have a mobile mental health crisis team? If so, always call for that team instead of the police in circumstances where a crime has not been committed.

3. if you have to call the cops, make sure that they know he's an EDI (emotionally disturbed individual) and ask for outreach (if you have one locally)

4. Look to your state's laws for conservatorship and guardianship

5. join NAMI or another group

6. He needs to let everybody know about his medications, he needs to track his cycles, he needs to alert people including his doctors to when and why he's going off a medication

7. He needs to execute both property and medical powers of attorney for brief periods should he lack capacity so that others can make decisions for him.

NAMI will help out more. The intersection between criminal law and mental health is incredibly scary for all concerned.
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Old 07-23-2017, 12:18 PM
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Hi Yourself!

Great, you have so much knowledge!
Would you have advice on how to proceed in someone's situation, who has been kept in solitary for years and is supposedly going to face that for years to come, too (that is what he has been told), although he has behaved always well from day 1 in prison and has no such mental issue that would imply to the need of being kept in the hole? I mean, he is depressed but that is not a threat to anyone...

I'd be most grateful for concrete steps of advice, as trying to help and support him in any way I can as a friend. He is in Nevada, if that makes a difference..

Thank you so much in advance!

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Old 07-23-2017, 04:44 PM
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Hi Yourself!

Great, you have so much knowledge!
Would you have advice on how to proceed in someone's situation, who has been kept in solitary for years and is supposedly going to face that for years to come, too (that is what he has been told), although he has behaved always well from day 1 in prison and has no such mental issue that would imply to the need of being kept in the hole? I mean, he is depressed but that is not a threat to anyone...

I'd be most grateful for concrete steps of advice, as trying to help and support him in any way I can as a friend. He is in Nevada, if that makes a difference..

Thank you so much in advance!

A person does not have to be mentally ill to find himself in the hole. The hole is used routinely for those who are deemed too dangerous to be in general population including people deemed to be gang members. Such people need to find the reason they are in the hole and then do what's necessary to work his way out of the hole. Unfortunately for those deemed high enough up on the gang chain, this means breaking from the gang and then being interrogated about all gang activities, known gang members, etc. Most people are not willing to do that, so they are deciding to stay in the hole at some level for the term of their confinement.

In the last year or two, there was an ACLU case dealing with solitary in NY, and I'd definitely look at that, as well as the methods and programs that NY has to come up with to allow people to work their way out of solitary confinement. But again, there may be things required that the person is simply unwilling to do. As a result, they stay separated from the rest of the prison population.
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Old 07-24-2017, 05:02 AM
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A person does not have to be mentally ill to find himself in the hole. The hole is used routinely for those who are deemed too dangerous to be in general population including people deemed to be gang members. Such people need to find the reason they are in the hole and then do what's necessary to work his way out of the hole. Unfortunately for those deemed high enough up on the gang chain, this means breaking from the gang and then being interrogated about all gang activities, known gang members, etc. Most people are not willing to do that, so they are deciding to stay in the hole at some level for the term of their confinement.

In the last year or two, there was an ACLU case dealing with solitary in NY, and I'd definitely look at that, as well as the methods and programs that NY has to come up with to allow people to work their way out of solitary confinement. But again, there may be things required that the person is simply unwilling to do. As a result, they stay separated from the rest of the prison population.
Thank you very much for the tips! My friend is not in any way related to the gangs or anything, inside or out. He's been told he is kept in the hole 'due to the nature of his sentence'; it was domestic incident as he found his GF in bed with another man, that man in bed and his GF attacked him and so he lost his temper. He beat them up what was very wrong of course. He has mixed martial arts background, so these two together most likely are the reason.

Do you know if he is entitled to have the reasons in written form? Would be easier to address with concrecy.

Now it being more or less abstract, it's difficult to pinpoint.

Most guys sentenced for domestic violence incident are among the general population. There is no real basis for him not allowed that. He has behaved super well, too.
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Old 07-24-2017, 07:38 AM
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Originally Posted by AstridOfNorth View Post
Thank you very much for the tips! My friend is not in any way related to the gangs or anything, inside or out. He's been told he is kept in the hole 'due to the nature of his sentence'; it was domestic incident as he found his GF in bed with another man, that man in bed and his GF attacked him and so he lost his temper. He beat them up what was very wrong of course. He has mixed martial arts background, so these two together most likely are the reason.
[...]
Most guys sentenced for domestic violence incident are among the general population. There is no real basis for him not allowed that. He has behaved super well, too.
He's not most guys, though. I know it's hard to understand, but he's also, to some, a target. His charges and the profile of his case put him at risk. Being in solitary isn't fun, but neither is being in prison. Right now the facility believes him to be at risk and I can see why. What you're viewing as punishment is in reality, protecting him.

You see him as your friend, inmates with nothing to lose see status in harming him.
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Old 07-24-2017, 07:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AstridOfNorth View Post
Thank you very much for the tips! My friend is not in any way related to the gangs or anything, inside or out. He's been told he is kept in the hole 'due to the nature of his sentence'; it was domestic incident as he found his GF in bed with another man, that man in bed and his GF attacked him and so he lost his temper. He beat them up what was very wrong of course. He has mixed martial arts background, so these two together most likely are the reason.

Do you know if he is entitled to have the reasons in written form? Would be easier to address with concrecy.

Now it being more or less abstract, it's difficult to pinpoint.

Most guys sentenced for domestic violence incident are among the general population. There is no real basis for him not allowed that. He has behaved super well, too.
There is a real basis for him not being on the mainline. He's convicted of sexual assault. The men on the mainline don't want him there. He would not fare well in general pop.
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