Report by advocates alleges abuse after escape
From Times Union:
While the state inspector general’s report detailed the factors that contributed to the escape from Clinton Correctional Facility last June, a new report from a prisoner advocacy group levels a number of abuse claims against staff at the maximum-security prison that allegedly occurred in the wake of the escape.
The Correctional Association of NY report, largely a compilation of anonymous inmate accounts, contends the June 6, 2015, breakout was followed by an uptick in abusive behavior by employees, plus excessive use of solitary confinement and rampant racism.
The Correctional Association recommends that the prison, one of the state’s largest and infamously referred to as “Little Siberia,” should be shut down along with Attica, another facility marred by allegations of abuse.
“Albany has been putting pressure on the prison, and it is rolling downhill and we are punished as a result,” the inmate told the Correctional Association. “Any little thing you say, they put their hands on you. You can just say, ‘what?’ And they can beat you.”
Another detailed an incident that was referred to investigators but apparently remains unresolved.
“A CO put his knee on my back. When I asked what was going on, one officer said ‘shut the —- up. This is what happens when people escape,’” the inmate told the Correctional Association.
Asked why inmates were granted anonymity in the report, Correctional Association Executive Director Soffiyah Elijah said it was for the physical safety of those who came forward.
“They can’t take the risk of being perhaps killed for reporting out what has happened in the prison,” she said.
There are a number of similarities in the allegations, including retaliation for speaking out through the grievance process or to the media, officers interfering with inmates’ food, and officers writing false disciplinary tickets. Pleas for officers to be required to wear body cameras and for more minority officers to be stationed at the prison in rural Clinton County also are common throughout.
The allegations resemble those detailed in media reports since the escape. Read the full article.
Ever wonder what it’s like to be in solitary confinement? The New York Campaign for Alternatives to Isolated Confinement (CAIC) is hosting an exhibition on injustice in the prison system on Thursday at the South Shore YMCA in Eltingville. The event is from 6 to 8 p.m., and will have a panel presentation, discussion and [...]Read More
WOMEN AND ISOLATED CONFINEMENT Women held in isolated confinement are subjected to dehumanizing treatment—treatment that makes it difficult for them to maintain their dignity, hygiene, nutrition and personal property. They can get in trouble for something as simple as attempting to talk to the person next to them. They are denied commissary privileges which provide [...]Read More
Reports & Research
“Solitary at Southport: A 2017 Report Based Upon the Correctional Association’s Visits, Data Analysis, & First-Hand Accounts of the Torture of Solitary Confinement from One of New York’s Supermax Prisons”
“The isolation itself is torture. Mentally and emotionally, it breaks you down. Spiritually it strips you. The way it is built is to break you down as a person and push your family away.” From “Solitary at Southport” Solitary confinement is torture. New York State subjects people to solitary confinement and other forms of isolation [...]Read More