Rustbelt Radio coverage of Sept.18 hearing download mp3
In this edition: Torture and intimidation at SCI Camp Hill, a last minute appeal for the life of a man scheduled to be killed by the state on October 3, and Native Americans in South Dakota prisons win the right to use tobacco in religious ceremonies.. read more
Well over one hundred people filled a conference suite at Temple University in Philadelphia on Tuesday, September 18, to hear testimony on the effects of solitary confinement. They included survivors of solitary, family members, community members, advocates, and lawmakers. The hearing was held by the Democratic Policy Committee of Pennsylvania at the request of Representative Ronald G. Waters (D-Delaware/Philadelphia), a member of the committee. It comes in the wake of the first ever Congressional hearing on solitary confinement, held by a subcommittee of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee in June, and serves as yet another marker of how the widespread practice of solitary confinement in American prisons and jails is quickly becoming a mainstream human rights issue.
The hearing also followed a rally on Monday at Philadelphia’s Love Park, organized by the Human Rights Coalition. About 150 participants listened to speakers describe their experiences in solitary confinement, while holding signs and banners that read “Jobs Not Jails,” “Fund Schools Not Prisons,” and “End Torture in Pennsylvania.” One banner listed the names of a group of prisoners who have been held in extreme isolation for from ten to thirty years.
In this edition: Denial of mental health treatment at SCI Fayette, 18-year old murder case about to be re-tried in Pittsburgh, Mumia Abu-Jamal challenges his Life Without Parole sentence in federal court, and more..