Prisons Use Controversial Approaches To The Pandemic

Empty prison cell
Via Flickr
William Anderson
July 15, 2020

Black people fill the prisons of this country. So that means these facilities can get away with a lot when they shouldn’t. Since they’ve become a hotbed for the pandemic and its spread, prisons are using a certified form of torture to respond to the problem.

Solitary confinement is classified as torture. The United States sets itself apart from other Western and industrialized nations by continuing to allow this form of torture in its prisons - much like our outdated use of capital punishment. 

Now, this torture method is INCREASING, with horrible justifications.

As a response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the use of solitary confinement has increased by 500%. Prisons claim they’re using it to curb the spread of the virus, but torture is not helping. 

Instead, prisons need to “de-densify.” This is something they needed to do BEFORE the outbreak!

In order to de-densify, prisons must release people at the end of their terms, elderly people, and those considered “low-risk.” But they’ve been reluctant to do so. Instead, they’re killing people through neglect who were not even sentenced to death. 

It can still get worse.

If prisons are allowed to get away with the widespread use of solitary confinement in response to this public health crisis, they may try to undo years of work to stop torture in prisons. This is a fight to show that being in prison doesn’t make someone less human!

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