On September 5, 2013, the two-month California prison hunger strike against long-term solitary confinement was terminated. Click here for details. This was the third hunger strike in two years. Two deaths have been attributed to the hunger strikes, in which at least 100 prisoners participated. Two California state legislatures have announced their intention to hold hearings on long-term solitary confinement.
It is day 52 of the hunger strike by prisoners in California protesting against solitary confinement. 96 prisoners are participating, across three institutions. Some prisoners have already been force-fed. Access updated information.
Pace Professor Michael B. Mushlin, an international expert on prisoners’ rights, describes his experience in observing solitary confinement prison conditions.
Long term solitary confinement is increasingly under attack, with the current hunger strike only the latest salvo. Conservatives are beginning to oppose it because of its expense, and the states no longer have the money in their budgets to support it. Others are concerned not only about its impact on the prisoner but also the impact on the communities in which these prisoners are released.
These different forces may come together to end the widespread practice of long-term solitary confinement.