How Much Time U.S. Prisoners Spend in Solitary
April 22, 2014, 9:53 pm ET
The United States is alone among Western nations in its widespread use of solitary confinement in prison — what mental-health experts define as keeping an inmate locked down for 22 hours a day or more in a cell, with limited contact with others.
Most corrections officials don’t call it solitary. They refer instead to punitive segregation, which typically has a time limit, usually 30 days or less, for violating prison rules — and administrative segregation, also known as restricted housing or special housing units. “Ad seg” is used to isolate gang members or those with a history of assaulting others, but often those in protective custody or with mental-health problems, and in some states, juveniles, end up there, too…
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