Downstate Correctional Facility
The Correctional Association (CA) visited Downstate Correctional Facility, a maximum security reception and classification facility for men operated by the Department of Correctional Services (DOCS) on November 19, 2009. The facility is located in Dutchess County in the town of Fishkill, NY, approximately 60 miles north of New York City. Downstate was constructed in 1979 as the first facility designated entirely to the reception and classification of inmates. At the time of our visit, Downstate housed 1,130 inmates, with a total capacity of 1,234. The facility contains a 36-bed Special Housing Unit (SHU), which held 12 inmates in disciplinary segregation at the time of our visit. While the facility is dedicated to reception and classification, it also maintains a work cadre comprising non-reception inmates who reside at the facility to perform support services. The work cadre capacity is 288 inmates and at the time of our visit housed 274 inmates.
The series, which has earned praise for its evenhandedness and authenticity, takes viewers through a dramatic retelling of the two men’s elaborate plot, the escape, and the ensuing manhunt. But it ignores one of the most serious consequences of the break: the widespread retaliation carried out against the people left behind in Clinton and other New York prisons.Read More
Staten Islanders had the opportunity Thursday night to briefly experience one of the hardest parts of our nation’s penal system. A group of advocates brought a makeshift solitary cell to the South Shore YMCA in Eltingville to show people the level of isolation inmates can face. The model was constructed by Doug Van Zandt, of [...]Read More
“Prison Within Prison: Voices of Women Held In Isolated Confinement in New York” is a collection of oral and visual observations from twenty women about their experiences being held in isolated confinement in New York’s women’s prisons and Rikers Island. They are advocates and leaders on a range of issues in the movement to end [...]Read More
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