New York City Proposes an End to Solitary Prison Confinement

New York City is proposing an end to solitary confinement.

“More and more people have looked at this issue and found that there’s a better way,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said Tuesday, adding that he hopes the city’s action will spur an end to solitary confinement across the U.S.

Other proposed criminal-justice reforms would end the use of routine non-individualized restraints and require a minimum of 10 hours out of the prison cell.

The mayor has vowed to end solitary confinement, which has been criticized by civil-rights advocates as inhumane and abusive. Urgency gained with the case of Kalief Browder, a Bronx teen who spent three years at Rikers Island awaiting trial after allegedly stealing a backpack in 2010. A majority of his prison time was spent in solitary confinement. Browder committed suicide two years after his release from jail, at age 22, and his story was made into a documentary series produced by Jay-Z.

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