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Reforming Prison's Harshest Tactic The Angola 3 case may help change the arbitrary and sometimes abusive use of solitary

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Image uploaded from a quicklink In Dec. 2012 the NYCLU filed a lawsuit to curb the use of solitary confinement in that state's prisons, broadly decrying it as "extreme isolation" that imperils the physical and psychological well-being of inmates on solo lockdown and risks undermining prison safety overall. Also in 2012, Maine lawmakers -- including a Republican governor considered tough on crime -- voted to formally ratchet back the use of solitary confinement in that state. In addition, Congress hosted a rare special hearing on the practice, highlighting the fact that the US has no federal guidelines precisely defining when solitary confinement should begin, when it should end and which infractions merit such an added punishment for prisoners. Prison watchers and reformers, however, say that incremental activity in 2012 does not in itself suggest that the nation is anywhere near a wholesale crackdown on what many...

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