America’s Prison System Needs Rehabilitation

By Richard MacTough
Staff Writer

Around The United States over 80,000 men, women and children sit in solitary confinement currently.

Solitary Confinement is a form of punishment that can leave a prisoner mentally unstable and isolated from human contact.

In the worst cases, some prisoners have been in confinement for decades.

Many think this is used for cold cases, for example, so the police can catch a serial killer.

But the reasons for being reprimanded can be simply for having cigarettes.

Inmates can be punished for a victimless crime, but prisons are designed to be only punishment, taking away the political act of rehabilitation.

The U.N convention torture reports the declaration of Protection of All Persons from Being Subjected to Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment is being violated by the prison system.

Any kind of punishment that is meant to inflict mental or physical torture is a violation of the law and unconstitutional.

Inmates in solitary have reported auditory and visual hallucinations.

Many experience insomnia, increased risk for suicide, the loss of time and perception.

According to solitarywatch.com, in 1996, Stacy Barker was put into an isolation unit for reporting a sexual assault from guards.

It is corrupt and does not fit what the prison system is supposed to be.

According to justice.gov, back in 2013, Solitary Confinement was used as a means of organizing prisoners with serious mental illness because they lacked a good mental health program in their facilities.

This includes the state of Pennsylvania.

Some individuals developed Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) from being in an isolation unit for a long period of time.

In states like New York and Texas, when prisoners are put into this emotional painful chamber, suicide is higher than the general population.

In California, when in confinement, the chances of suicide is 33 times mores likely compared to the regular population.

PBS has an eye-opening documentary:

Solitary Nation, available on http://www.pbs.org/video/2365229709//.

We need to fix the prison system and increase a greater chance of rehabilitation.

Email Richard at:
rmactough@live.esu.edu

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