A diverse, welcoming community of open hearts and minds since 1948
This historic hearing took place under the chairmanship of Senator D*** Durbin, Senate judiciary subcommittee on Tuesday. Sen. Durbin and the panelists presented powerful testimony. Especially disturbing and moving was the testimony of Anthony Graves, who was wrongly convicted of murder, and was exonerated after spending 18 years in prison, most of them in solitary confinement. He courageously described in factual and graphic detail how he and his fellow prisoners were brutally treated, and how such treatment is intentionally used to break down their spirits, resulting in severe anguish and permanent damage, including suicide, self-mutilation, paranoia and difficulty in adjusting to the world outside. Sen. Durbin stated that over 80,000 of the 2.3 million prisoners are held in isolation, among them children and those with mental illness.
The New York Times has excellent coverage of the hearing. Click on http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/21/opinion/the-abuse-of-solitary-con....
In our own Commonwealth of Virginia, 500 of the 750 cells at the Red Onion Maximum Security Prison are isolation cells, where prisoners are kept 23 out of 24 hours each day. Recent hunger strikes drew attention to their abysmal treatment. There is a total of 1,800 isolation cells in the whole of Virginia. Del. Patrick Hope (Arl.) is urging that a study be initiated on the use of isolation in Virginia. Click on: http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/dc-politics/va-prisons-use-of-s...
Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you'd like to join members of our congregation in working with the National Religious Campaign Against Torture (NRCAT) and with Del. Hope, educating ourselves and advocating for the elimination of prolonged isolation in prisons.
Our church is a participating member of NRCAT, and values its leadership in bringing daylight to the issue of solitary confinement by making it a major part of its platform, and by promoting Tuesday's Senate hearing. To learn more about its significant anti-torture work, click on: http://nrcat.org.
They were just talking about Torture - See Rev. Karen Tse's speech about her work in the prisons of Cambodia.
Thank you Moya. There were at least two programs on this with I think the same man, Anthony Gravers, on WAMU this past week.
The private prison industry needs to be exposed for its criminality in fraudulent over-charging the public,human rights violations in the extreme, and aid in maintaining racial injustice in the U.S. I am so glad to see Del. Hope taking the lead on this issue in the Commonwealth. I would like to be informed whenever you have any events or news about this -- do you have a sign-up or is this enough of a notice to you.