DOJ IG’s Report: BOP Fails to Meet Needs of Female Inmates

female inmates

By Christopher Zoukis A report issued September 18 by the Inspector General (IG) of the Department of Justice (DOJ) identifies shortcomings in how the leaders of DOJ’s Bureau of Prisons (BOP) and the correctional facilities it runs fail to meet the needs of its female inmates. Women are about 7%…

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Food-Related Outbreaks Sicken Prisoners Six Times More Often

a tray of prison food

By Christopher Zoukis Prison food usually makes news only when blamed for hunger strikes or riots, or a supplier is found providing rancid or insect-infested food. Yet it also poses an important but little-studied public health issue, recently tackled by a research team from the Centers for Disease Control and…

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Bill to Improve Conditions for Female Inmates

By Christopher Zoukis Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ) and three co-sponsors have introduced S. 1524, the “Dignity for Incarcerated Women Act,” meant to improve the treatment of female federal inmates who are the primary caretakers of children. The bill, proposed July 11, would require the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) to…

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Did Federal Prison Use Chains, Solitary to Punish Inmate for Not Accepting Violent Cellmate?

Alleged mistreatment of a Pennsylvania inmate who refused to accept his new cellmate has given rise to a class-action suit over conditions at the prison. By Christopher Zoukis Sebastian Richardson is under 5 feet tall, but is having an oversized impact on the federal prison system, particularly the U.S. Penitentiary…

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Despite DOJ Ban, Private Prison Contracts in Georgia Are Renewed

By Christopher Zoukis This past August was a very rough month for privately-owned and operated prisons, at the hands of the Department of Justice. First, on Aug. 11, the DOJ inspector general’s office issued an 86-page report unfavorably comparing the performance of private prisons – looking over a four-year span…

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DOJ Investigates Possible Prisoners’ Rights Violations in Alabama

By Christopher Zoukis The Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has launched a statewide probe on whether conditions in Alabama’s 14 prisons for men violate the rights of inmates. The investigation is under the Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons Act, which allows action against jails or…

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Russia’s “Sadists’ Law” threatens to legitimize torture and violence of prisoners

In an alarming reminder of how closely some industrialized countries teeter on the edge of Draconian, the State Duma of Russia has introduced a law which effectively sanctions the abuse and killing of inmates. The “sadists’ law,” as it’s come to be known, has passed the preliminary stage, and would…

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The hypocrisy of imprisoning undocumented immigrants

Tragic photos capturing the horrific realities of many of the world’s refugee populations have been making the rounds recently. And while I choose my words carefully here—refugees are not the same as migrants—it all relates back to the way we treat those seeking out better opportunities for themselves and their…

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