Las Vegas, NV – The American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada (ACLUNV), along with Solitary Watch and the Nevada Disability Advocacy & Law Center (NDALC), released a report today exposing the horrors of solitary confinement as told through the perspective of individuals incarcerated in the Nevada Department of Corrections (NDOC). The report, “Unlocking Solitary Confinement: Ending Extreme Isolation in Nevada State Prisons” is available online at www.aclunv.org/.
The report was created in response to the NDOC's failure to satisfactorily complete a study on the use of segregation required by SB 107, a bill from the 2013 Nevada legislature. At that time, NDOC leadership claimed solitary confinement was not used in Nevada. However, inmate complaints to ACLUNV, Solitary Watch, and NDALC conflicted with these claims and led to the necessity of this report. The results prove that solitary confinement is widely used in the state, often for prolonged periods of time and that basic human needs are not met when solitary confinement is imposed on inmates.
The report is based on survey responses from 281 incarcerated individuals who were subjected to, or are currently subjected to, solitary confinement in Nevada. "Now is the time to end the inhumane practice of extreme isolation in Nevada prisons. We are confident that this report will bring justice to the men and women who courageously shared their experiences with us," said Holly Welborn, Policy Director of the ACLU of Nevada.
The report recommends that the NDOC audit their use of isolation; adopt policies and practices designed to end long-term segregation; immediately remove individuals with serious mental illnesses and developmental disabilities from isolation; and improve overall conditions in solitary confinement.
“We urge lawmakers to consider what is revealed in this report and pass the necessary legislation to eliminate the use of solitary confinement in Nevada’s prisons. The cruel reality of solitary confinement’s effects on prisoners is exposed in this report, the harmful results of which leave us less safe when prisoners are released,” said Tod Story, executive director.
About American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada
The ACLU of Nevada is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization committed to the defense and advancement of civil liberties and civil rights for all people in Nevada since 1966. For additional information, please visit http://www.aclunv.org.