CA in the Press | February 14, 2018

Tampons in the mail? Just the beginning of the change we need

Women pressuring T.J. Shope, a Republican Arizona state representative, to push forward a bill that would provide free and unlimited feminine hygiene products to female inmates in Arizona’s state prison are sending him — what else? — tampons and pads. The bill, introduced by Rep. Athena Salman, was stalled over the weekend by Shope, because the Department of Corrections is currently revising its policy.Read More

CA in the Press | February 10, 2018

AUDIO: Solitary at Southport on “On the Count”

On Saturday, February 10, Tyrrell Muhammad was joined by Scott Paltrowitz, both of the CA, on WBAI’s  “On The Count” radio broadcast, to discuss and read excerpts from the recently released report, “Solitary at Southport.” Southport Correctional Facility is one of the two super-maximum security prisons in NYS with the primary purpose of holding people in solitary or isolated  confinement. Read More

CA in the Press | February 2, 2018

Prison Contraband Seizures Up, Guards Say More Can Be Done

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — The union representing New York correction officers says new security methods are needed to reduce the amount of contraband smuggled into state prisons, while prison officials say more prohibited items are being seized than ever before. The Department of Corrections and Community Supervision said this week that the number of incidents involving contraband at the state’s 54 prisons more than doubled over the last decade, from 2,540 incidents in 2008 to 5,231 incidents last year.Read More

CA in the Press | January 15, 2018

Cuomo’s prison package crackdown is suspended

Following an outcry from prison-reform advocates and a flurry of news reports, Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Friday said he was suspending an initiative that sharply limited the content of care packages that inmates can receive in state prisons. Reform advocates said the program, in which friends and families of inmates had to send items through private vendors, was too restrictive and would cut off contact between prisoners and their families.Read More

CA in the Press | January 13, 2018

NY book ban to make prisons “safer” draws backlash

New York State Department of Correctional and Community Service (DOCCS) enacted Directive 4911A in December as a pilot project in three New York prisons. Under this Directive, prisoners may only receive packages from six approved vendors (a couple more vendors may be later added), and packages from family members are restricted to non-electrical musical instruments, a wedding ring, and clothing for the prisoner to wear upon release.Read More

| January 11, 2018

What Can’t You Send to an Inmate in New York? Apples, Used Books and More

ALBANY — Until very recently, care packages for inmates in New York State prisons could contain a hodgepodge of items to let them know someone on the outside was thinking of them: a fresh apple, a hoodie, a dog-eared paperback. As of this month, all those things are no longer allowed.Read More

| January 10, 2018

Advocates take issue with new state policy on inmate care packages

Reform advocates contend a restrictive new program that privatizes the sending of care packages to prison inmates is punitive, but prison officials say it’s intended to fight contraband. “People are very upset and families are upset,” said Jack Beck, who runs the Prisoner Visiting project at the Correctional Association of New York, a group that advocates for better prison conditions.Read More

CA in the Press | December 23, 2017

All They Want for Christmas Is a Limit on Solitary Confinement

After being accused of cursing at a corrections officer, Jessica Concepcion, seven months pregnant, spent the Christmas of 2006 in solitary confinement at Bedford Hills, New York’s maximum-security prison for women. Confined to her a cell for 23 consecutive hours, she had no opportunity for any human interaction, let alone a chance to wish her family a merry Christmas.Read More

News | December 15, 2017

New York Supermax Report Reveals Brutality, Neglect, and Prolonged Solitary Confinement at Southport State Prison

Imagine row after row of cell doors that rarely open and row after row of people trapped behind those doors, in small cells, day after day. Imagine having to hold most of your conversations by shouting through your cell door at voices whose faces you cannot see; imagine trying to sleep as a cacophony of other voices continue shouting around you.Read More

CA in the Press | December 14, 2017

VIDEO: Advocates renew push to end solitary confinement

Southport Correctional Facility is one of two super-maximum security prisons in the state that places an emphasis on solitary confinement. A new report looking at the facility’s practices is highlighting the negative impact solitary confinement can have on a human. So advocates are making a renewed push for the HALT Act.Read More

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