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13 Jun Comptroller Stringer and Trustees: New York City Pension Funds Complete First-In-The-Nation Divestment From Private Prison Companies

THANK YOU New York City Comptroller for divesting NYC Pension funds from private prison companies! A good first step. http://comptroller.nyc.gov/newsroom/comptroller-stringer-and-trustees-new-york-city-pension-funds-complete-first-in-the-nation-divestment-from-private-prison-companies/d — Dear Friends: America has a mass incarceration problem. For too long, we chose ‘tough on crime’ approaches that meant millions of non-violent people – often poor, overwhelmingly...

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07 Jun You, Dr. Gerard Bryant, are a mental health professional (really?)–You, Steven Safyer, are a doctor (really?) and a Board of Correction member charged with ensuring humane conditions at the city jails. YOU BOTH voted to SHACKLE our youth at Rikers, voting for modern day SLAVERY. SHAME ON YOU!

http://www.ny1.com/…/sources-young-rikers-islanders-inmates…   In response to the NYC Board of Correction's January 13, 2017 vote (detailed in the above NY1 story by Courtney Gross) the NYC Jails Action Coalition (JAC) has begun a flyer campaign in the local neighborhoods and places of business of NYC Board of Correction...

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14 Jan JAC Writes Urgent Plea to BOC to Reject “Emergency” Variance Aimed at Keeping Teens in Solitary-Like Unit on Rikers

New York City Jails Action Coalition c/o Urban Justice Center 40 Rector Street, 9th floor New York, NY 10006   January 13, 2017     NYC Board of Correction 1 Centre Street, Room 2213 New York, NY 10007 BY E-MAIL   Dear Members of the Board of Correction:   We are outraged that the Department of Correction (DOC) is flouting...

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25 Nov Demands for Addressing Rape in NYC Jails!

Any incarcerated person who is subjected to sexual abuse or sexual harassment in NYC jails must receive best-practice, evidence-based care and must be treated with utmost concern and professionalism. The Board must adopt standards that will prevent sexual violence to the greatest extent possible. But...

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19 Nov “Its inconcievable that something that we KNOW is ending prison rape should not be allowed because of the Prison Rape Elimination Act that doesn’t make any sense.”

Mik Kinkead of the Sylvia RIvera Law Project on the topic of what the PREA standards say about the Trans Gender Housing Unit: "SRLP maintains that the National PREA Standards DO actually allow for a voluntary Trans-Gender Health Unit. I am aware that the Dept of...

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17 Nov The NYC Board of Correction is Planning on Dismantling the Trans Housing Unit at Rikers

The NYC Department of Correction Commissioner is claiming that its plan to shutter the life-saving Trans Housing Unit, or THU, on Rikers Island alleging that PREA (the Federal Prison Rape Elimination Act) prohibits the segregation of transgender inmates based on their anatomy. "Its our understanding that...

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17 Nov New Rule to Prevent Rape and Sexual Abuse Doesn’t Go Far Enough to Protect Survivors

[photoshelter-gallery g_id="G0000TaT3PIM96oY" g_name="Action-during-BOC-Meeting-to-END-RAPE-ON-RIKERS-NOVEMBER-15-2016" width="600" f_fullscreen="t" bgtrans="t" pho_credit="iptc" twoup="f" f_bbar="t" f_bbarbig="f" fsvis="f" f_show_caption="t" crop="f" f_enable_embed_btn="t" f_htmllinks="t" f_l="t" f_send_to_friend_btn="f" f_show_slidenum="t" f_topbar="f" f_show_watermark="t" img_title="casc" linkdest="c" trans="xfade" target="_self" tbs="5000" f_link="t" f_smooth="f" f_mtrx="t" f_ap="t" f_up="f" height="400" btype="old" bcolor="#CCCCCC" ] JAC Attempted to stave a rushed-vote on the implementation of the new...

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28 Jul JAC Rallies at City Hall Beseeching BOC to Implement Comprehensive Evidence-Based Harm-Reduction Rule Incorporating Best-Practice Standards for Rape and Sexual Assault Survivors on Rikers and in our City Jails

[vc_row row_type="row" use_row_as_full_screen_section="no" type="full_width" angled_section="no" text_align="left" background_image_as_pattern="without_pattern" css_animation="" full_width=""][vc_column][vc_raw_html]JTNDZGl2JTIwc3R5bGUlM0QlMjJ3aWR0aCUzQTUwMHB4JTNCaGVpZ2h0JTNBMzUwcHglM0IlMjIlMjBkYXRhLXBzLWVtYmVkLXR5cGUlM0QlMjJzbGlkZXNob3clMjIlMjBkYXRhLXBzLWVtYmVkLWdpZCUzRCUyMkcwMDAwZlJaUnpsb3lJM1UlMjIlM0UlM0MlMkZkaXYlM0UlMEElM0NzY3JpcHQlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjJodHRwJTNBJTJGJTJGamFpbHNhY3Rpb25jb2FsaXRpb24ucGhvdG9zaGVsdGVyLmNvbSUyRmpzJTJGcHNFbWJlZC5qcyUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRnNjcmlwdCUzRSUwQSUzQ3NjcmlwdCUzRV9wc0VtYmVkJTI4JTIyaHR0cCUzQSUyRiUyRmphaWxzYWN0aW9uY29hbGl0aW9uLnBob3Rvc2hlbHRlci5jb20lMjIlMjklM0IlM0MlMkZzY3JpcHQlM0U=[/vc_raw_html][vc_column_text css_animation=""]New Yorkers, survivors of sexual violence, women’s rights advocates, students, jail reform advocates, transgender and gender non-conforming advocates, abolitionist organizers, and other community members and leaders rally on the steps of City Hall and held a...

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26 Jul JAC and 90+ Partner Organizations and Inividuals Sign-On to Letter Beseeching NYC BOC to Implement Evidence-based, Victim-Centered Methods and Practices to End Rape and Sexual Assault in our City Jails and Rikers

jac-comments-with-endorsers-8-31-2016   July 26, 2016 To the New York City Board of Correction: We, the undersigned organizations and individuals, believe that the Department of Correction (DOC), Health + Hospitals (H+H), and the Board of Correction (Board) must take action to end sexual violence in New York City jails. Any...

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06 Jul Brittany Kathryn Knapp Headlines Visions of Confinement Exhibition

[photoshelter-gallery g_id="G0000oCauGiEud30" g_name="Brittnay-Kathryn-Knapp-Headlines-Visions-of-Confinement-Exhibition" width="600" f_fullscreen="t" bgtrans="t" pho_credit="iptc" twoup="f" f_bbar="t" f_bbarbig="f" fsvis="f" f_show_caption="t" crop="f" f_enable_embed_btn="t" f_htmllinks="t" f_l="t" f_send_to_friend_btn="f" f_show_slidenum="t" f_topbar="f" f_show_watermark="t" img_title="casc" linkdest="c" trans="xfade" target="_self" tbs="5000" f_link="t" f_smooth="f" f_mtrx="t" f_ap="t" f_up="f" height="400" btype="old" bcolor="#CCCCCC" ]Artist, Art Therapist, Survivor and Jails Action Coalition member Brittnay Kathryn Knapp's...

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27 Jun NYC Official Says Rape is Inevitable at Rikers Island: If true, we cannot send anyone there by Nick Malinowski, The Huffington Post

NYC Official Says Rape is Inevitable at Rikers Island: If true, we cannot send anyone there by Nick Malinowski, The Huffington Post, 6.27.16 In the most recent acknowledgement of what federal prosecutors dubbed a “culture of brutality” at Rikers Island, a mayoral appointee to the agency...

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22 Jun Jake Pearson of the Associated Press Publishes Scathing Consultant Report on Rape and Sexual Assault on Rikers Island

APNewsBreak: Report assails NYC jail's sex abuse response An internal report finds New York City's Rikers Island jail has entrenched problems responding to sexual abuse complaints June 21, 2016, at 12:44 a.m. By JAKE PEARSON, Associated Press NEW YORK (AP) — "New York City's Rikers Island jail has entrenched...

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22 Jun COBA President Norman Seabrook Indicted and Arrested on Corruption Charges

It’s a remarkably irony to see Seabrook in cuffs after he’s openly baited activists by stating that he “sits in a room and makes up stories” to cover for the sins of his COBA union members who rape, assault,  kill, neglect, and torture the vulnerable population left to whither in their care on Rikers and in...

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13 May Life After Rape on Rikers: One Woman’s Story of Hope

[caption id="attachment_3736" align="alignleft" width="300"] (Artist: Brittany Kathryn Knapp)[/caption] Life After Rape on Rikers: One Woman’s Story of Hope I recently connected with Kathy Morse while organizing around the current and long-standing crisis of sexual violence at Rikers—a jail complex where correction officers beat, torture, and rape incarcerated...

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07 Apr Prison Isolation = Torture: Letter to the Editor by Mr. Johnny Perez, The New York Times, 4.07.16

To the Editor: New York State’s impending solitary confinement reforms (“Judge Backs Settlement on Isolation of Inmates,” news article, April 1) warrant clarification. Solitary confinement will be limited to 30 days for first-time nonviolent offenses; however, subsequent infractions could still result in back-to-back sentences that extend...

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21 Mar JAC and CAIC Advocate Against Solitary Confinement Targeted by New Reformist Bronx DA for Charges Accrued While in Rikers Awaiting Trial to Proove Her Innocence Beats the Bum Rap

  [data-ps-embed-type=slideshow] > iframe {position: absolute;top: 0;left: 0;} _psEmbed("http://jailsactioncoalition.photoshelter.com"); We turned out for our friend and advocate commrade Candie Hailey this week 3.21.16, the first day of Spring. What a beautiful day at the Bronx Supreme Criminal Courthouse. Candie was accused of behavioral crimes allegedly committed while she...

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18 Mar PACK THE COURT FOR JAC member & Rikers Solitary Survivor for over Three Years Candie Hailey 3.21.16 9:00 a.m. RALLY FOR CANDIE: Bronx Supreme Criminal Courthouse

[photoshelter-gallery g_id="G0000FFsLrBo1irQ" g_name="Candie-Hailey-Bing-Survivor" width="600" f_fullscreen="t" bgtrans="t" pho_credit="iptc" twoup="f" f_bbar="t" f_bbarbig="f" fsvis="f" f_show_caption="t" crop="f" f_enable_embed_btn="t" f_htmllinks="t" f_l="t" f_send_to_friend_btn="f" f_show_slidenum="t" f_topbar="f" f_show_watermark="t" img_title="casc" linkdest="c" trans="xfade" target="_self" tbs="5000" f_link="t" f_smooth="f" f_mtrx="t" f_ap="t" f_up="f" height="400" btype="old" bcolor="#CCCCCC" ] Candie Hailey has asked JAC and CAIC members to take note that...

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18 Mar #ShutDownRikers Founding Member Akeem Browder, Brother of Kalief Browder, RIP, Arrested Outside of Bronx Courthouse Protesting Beatdown of Jahmal Lightfoot by Rikers C.O.s

on March 16, 2016 Akeem Browder was wrongfully taken into custody by Bronx Supreme Court Officers after he allegedly refused to move 200 feet from the courthouse entrance.  JAC and SDR were in attendance to rally in front of Bronx Supreme Court where Bronx DA...

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18 Mar Founding JAC Member Five Mualimm-Ak Arrested after Book-Signing Event at Open Society for VIdeo-Taping NYPD Harassing a Homeless Man

// Five Mualimm-Ak, a member of Mayor Bill de Blasio's behavioral health task force, says he was roughed up by police and arrested. "This other officer came out, whipped out the baton, hit, kicked, assaulted us," Mualimm-Ak says. Joseph "Jazz" Hayden of the anti-police brutality group All...

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26 Feb Limit Solitary Confinement for People of all Ages: by Johnny Perez, The Washington Post, 2.26.16

Limit Solitary Confinement for People of all Ages: by Johnny Perez, The Washington Post, 2.26.16   The Feb. 22 editorial “Stepping away from solitary” correctly commended the efforts of Virginia state Sen. Barbara A. Favola (D-Arlington) to reform the use of solitary confinement for juveniles. However, the mental-health...

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24 Feb A LOOK AT THE TUG OF WAR OVER CLOSING RIKERS

The recent brouhaha began when, at her State of the City address,  City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito announced proposals to reform Rikers and other laws to shrink its population so that it could eventually be shut down.   Governor Cuomo added his support  by calling her...

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18 Feb Chronology of Movement to Shutter Rikers Island: Will the City of New York Close the Jail Complex Before the Anniversary of Kalief Browder’s 24th Birthday on May 23, 2017?

[vc_row row_type="row" use_row_as_full_screen_section="no" type="full_width" angled_section="no" text_align="left" background_image_as_pattern="without_pattern" css_animation=""][/vc_row][vc_column][/vc_column][vc_column_text]A recent set of ambitious NY Politicos have proffered that closing Rikers Island makes sense.  Mayor De Blasio dismisses statements by Governor Cuomo, Comptroller Scott Stringer, Council Speaker Melissa Mark Viverito, Board of Correction member Stanley Richards, NC...

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10 Feb CityViews: NYC Must Allow Rikers Inmates Alleging Sex Abuse to Remain Anonymous: By Natalie Block-Levin, City Limits, 2.8.16

[caption id="attachment_3041" align="alignnone" width="260"] Natalie Block-Levin at Anti-Rape Rally on Steps of City Hall December 14, 2016[/caption] At a GOP debate several weeks ago, Ted Cruz accused Donald Trump of being a New York Value-toting phony and sparked a national conversation about New York values. At...

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07 Feb Nicole Bartley: A Rikers Island correction officer who said she had fallen in love with an inmate, was charged on Sunday with raping him and conspiring to traffic marijuana into the jail for her caged lovebird

A Rikers Island correction officer who said she had fallen in love with an inmate, was charged on Sunday with raping him and conspiring to traffic marijuana into the jail for her caged lovebird. The probationary correction officer, Nicole Bartley, who was stationed at the George...

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06 Feb (CAIC) Campaign Against Isolated Confinement NY OPEN MIC and SPEAK OUT against Solitary!

(CAIC) Campaign Against Isolated Confinement NY OPEN MIC and SPEAK OUT against Solitary! Saturday Afternoon 2.06.2016 3:00 pm @ Pilgrim Cathedral at 15 West 126th Street in Harlem.  Refreshments were served and CASH Prizes were awarded for best song, verse, poem, skit, spoken word performance or expression(s) against torture...

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02 Feb TIMELINE: JAC Pushes for Solitary Confinement Reform in NYC Jails

[vc_row row_type="row" use_row_as_full_screen_section="no" type="full_width" angled_section="no" text_align="left" background_image_as_pattern="without_pattern" css_animation=""][vc_column][vc_column_text] The City jails are in crisis. Incarcerated people, including young people, are at risk of being subjected to serious physical harm by Department of Correction (DOC) staff who are unabashed in their use of excessive force. Inadequate health...

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28 Jan The Jails Action Coalition joined by Survivors and Councilman Dromm Rally on the steps of City Hall to call attention to the rape crises on Rikers Island

The Jails Action Coalition Rallies on the steps of City Hall to call attention to the rape crises on Rikers Island before a hearing held jointly by the City Council Committee on Fire and Criminal Justice Services and the Women's Issues Committee examining the unique...

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25 Jan President Obama Announces Ban on Solitary for Teens in Federal Prisons

President Obama  announced a ban on solitary confinement for juvenile offenders in the federal prison system citing  devastating psychological consequences et al. In a Washington Post op-ed published on January 25, 2016 the president ticks-off a number of mandates that also prohibit federal corrections officials from punishing prisoners who commit “low-level infractions”...

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12 Jan NYC BOC FLIP-FLOPS: Keeps 18-21 year old TEENS IN SOLITARY UNTIL JUNE 1, 2016

DOC Variance - Elimination of Punitive Segregation 18-21 Standard 1-17, "Limitations on the Use of Punitive Segregation" Subdivision (b)(1)(ii) A limited variance authorizes an extension of the January 1, 2016 deadline to complete the elimination of punitive segregation for inmates ages 18 through 21.  The deadline is extended...

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01 Jan COBA President Norman Seabrook & Commissioner Ponte Delay Ending Isolation for Young Adults

COBA President Norman Seabrook & Commissioner Ponte Delay Ending Isolation for Young Adults: On 1.11.16 the NYC Department of Correction's Commissioner, Joseph Ponte submitted a Variance Request to the NYC BOC  asking for a six-month delay in removing teenagers from torturous Solitary Confinement: "New York Jail...

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25 Dec Board of Correction Votes to Approve Commish Joseph Ponte’s Aggressively Regressive Raft of Rule Changes to the Department of Corrections Charter After Significant Revisions at the Urging of JAC and other Advocates

  From JJ: "Congrats to everyone in JAC for their hard work opposing the rollback of visit rights, packages, ESHU due process, and solitary confinement. We didn’t win everything, but we put up a strong fight and pushed the Board to revise the rule significantly." Here is...

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22 Dec GOVERNOR CUOMO SIGNS LEGISLATION TO PROHIBIT SHACKLING OF PREGNANT INMATES DURING TRANSPORTATION

For Immediate Release: 12/22/2015 GOVERNOR ANDREW M. CUOMO State of New York | Executive Chamber Andrew M. Cuomo | Governor GOVERNOR CUOMO SIGNS LEGISLATION TO PROHIBIT SHACKLING OF PREGNANT INMATES DURING TRANSPORTATION Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today signed legislation relating to the restraint of pregnant inmates. The bill (A.6430-A/S.983-A)...

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18 Dec How the Landmark Settlement Will—and Will Not—Change Solitary Confinement in New York’s Prisons

By Jean Casella Solitary Watch, December 18, 2015 The settlement announced Wednesday by the New York Civil Liberties Union in the Peoples v Fischer case brings broad, deep, and meaningful change to the way New York utilizes solitary confinement in its state prisons. It is a...

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16 Dec On 12.16.2015 the NYC Board of Correction Voted to Approve a Revised Version of the DOC’s Rule Change Proposal as Well as a Variance Request Granting COs Permission to Hold SOME Detainees and Prisoners in Solitary for Longer Than 30-Days Without a Seven-Day Reprieve from Torture

    ► LEARN ABOUT WHY JAC OPPOSED THE PROPOSED RULE CHANGES ►IF YOU ARE A MEMBER OF AN ORGANIZATION THAT WOULD LIKE TO ADD It's NAME TO THE LIST OF MEDIA, INTERFAITH, LEGAL, MENTAL HEALTH & CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM ADVOCATES WHO BELIEVE THESE RULE CHANGES ARE...

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15 Dec The Daniel Holtzclaws of Rikers Island: Staff Sex Abuse Crisis in City Jails by Nick Malinowski, Social Worker & Journalist THE HUFFINGTON POST, 12.15.2015

[caption id="attachment_2552" align="alignnone" width="300"] A view of the entrance to Rikers Island [/caption] Over the past week people across the United States expressed outrage upon learning of the trial and subsequent conviction of Daniel Holtzclaw, an Oklahoma City Police Department officer who raped, stalked and assaulted...

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13 Dec NYC Legal Organizations Publish Editorials Exposing Backwards Momentum Hidden in DOC Commish Ponte’s Proposals to Bring “Safety“ to Rikers Island

NYC Legal Organizations Publish Editorials Exposing Backwards Momentum Hidden in DOC Commish Ponte's Proposals to Bring ``Safety`` to Rikers Island Don’t Blame Family Ties for Violence at Rikers Island by Lisa Schreibersdorf, Executive Director, Brooklyn Defender Services, Huffington Post, 10.28.2015.From the LEGAL AID SOCIETY’S SARAH KERR...

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10 Dec

The Sylvia Rivera Law Project honored the Jails Action Coalition on December 8, 2015 with an Attorneys and Advocates Awards at the Barnard Center for Research on Women - BCRW. The celebration centered around the the work of several incredible honorees including JAC and: Dori Lewis: ...

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04 Dec MAYOR DE BLASIO AND COMMISSIONER PONTE ANNOUNCE SERIOUS ASSAULTS ON STAFF DOWN 11 PERCENT THIS YEAR: EVERYBODY RIPS APART STATS ON SAME DAY CO IS ALLEGEDLY BRUTALLY ATTACKED BY DETAINEES

[gallery ids="2432,2430,2431"]   THE CITY OF NEW YORK OFFICE OF THE MAYOR NEW YORK, NY 10007 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: pressoffice@cityhall.nyc.gov, (212) 788-2958 FACT SHEET: de Blasio Administration Investments in DOC Officer Safety Serious assaults on officers down 11 percent this calendar year. Use of Force with serious injury down 17 percent...

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23 Nov CAIC, Campaign for Alternatives to Isolated Confinement, rallies in Brooklyn

CAIC, Campaign for Alternatives to Isolated Confinement, rallies in Brooklyn at Utica and Nostram Avenues November 23, 2015. [photoshelter-gallery g_id="G0000_4gGRABe24M" g_name="CAMPAIGN-FOR-ALTERNATIVES-TO-ISOLATED-CONFINEMENT-RALLIES-IN-BROOKLYN" width="600" f_fullscreen="t" bgtrans="t" pho_credit="iptc" twoup="f" f_bbar="t" f_bbarbig="f" fsvis="f" f_show_caption="t" crop="f" f_enable_embed_btn="t" f_htmllinks="t" f_l="t" f_send_to_friend_btn="f" f_show_slidenum="t" f_topbar="f" f_show_watermark="t" img_title="casc" linkdest="c" trans="xfade" target="_self" tbs="5000" f_link="t" f_smooth="f" f_mtrx="t"...

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18 Nov PANEL DISCUSSION: RIKERS ISLAND: REFORM IT OR SHUT IT DOWN? CENTER FOR NYC AFFAIRS

The Center for New York City Affairs at The New School presented: Rikers Island: Reform It — or Shut it Down? The Rikers Island jail complex has become a symbol of criminal justice dysfunction. Last year, The New York Times uncovered 129 serious injuries to inmates. The US Attorney for the Southern District of...

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18 Nov NYC Comptroller Calls for the SHUTTERING OF RIKERS ISLAND at New School Panel Discussion in West Village

**All photography courtesy of: Jon Navarro - Office of The New York City Comptroller During a panel discussion co-sponsored by Colombia University and the New School on November 18, 2015 NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer called for the closing of the Rikers Island jail complex: "As we implement the...

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10 Nov President of COBA Produces Slick PR-Packaged Issue Bundle Aired at BOC Meeting in attempt to shift attention from Current Rule Change Proposals by DOC

The evening before the Board of Corrections meeting held on November 10, 2015 it published an agenda for the next morning that did not include a vote on the Department of Correction's most recent rule-change proposals to the DOC charter:   2015.11.10 - Public Meeting...

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10 Nov CAMPAIGN TO SHUT DOWN RIKERS INTERRUPTS NYC BOC MEETING

The Campaign to shut down Rikers engaged in acts of disruption at the November 10, 2015 NYC BOC meeting.   Interrupting DOC Commissioner Ponte speaking on proposed harmful reforms 2 Rikers at today's hearing #shutdownrikers pic.twitter.com/i9DW5wXsf5— #ShutDownRikers (@ShutDownRikers) November 10, 2015   The Campaign to Shut Down Rikers issued...

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06 Nov Police State, NYC Style: Bringing the Jail Out Into the Streets

Commissioner Joseph Ponte of the NYC Department of Correction (DOC) recently proposed rule changes that are regressive and would be destructive for not only people detained on Rikers Island but their loved ones too.  [caption id="attachment_1896" align="aligncenter" width="520"] Mayor de Blasio with NYPD Commissioner Bratton at a news conference...

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04 Nov Interfaith Center of New York hosts Annual Marshall Meyer Retreat Supporting Re-entry

On Wednesday 11.4.2015 the Interfaith Center of New York hosted a flotilla of faith leaders involved in supporting former incarceree and detainee re-entry into society.  Commissioner of the NYC Department of Corrections, Joseph Ponte was joined by two graduates of the Harlem Community Justice Center’s...

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02 Nov JAILS ACTION COALITION PENS LETTER TO BOC IN RESPONSE TO DOC’S BELATED TESTIMONY ENTERED IN SUPPORT OF ITS RULE CHANGE PROPOSALS TO THE BOC CHARTER

  JAC Letter to Board 11.2.2015 - Rulemaking [caption id="attachment_800" align="alignnone" width="300"] SIGN-ON to our LETTER[/caption] November 2, 2015 Stanley Brezenoff, Chair Members of the Board of Correction 1 Centre Street, Room 2213 New York, NY 10007 Dear Chair Brezenoff and Members of the Board: We write in response to the Testimony of Commissioner...

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31 Oct DOC & Commish Ponte, too busy to attend October Board of Correction Meeting and Hearing to Defend his own Rule Change Proposals Spend Month of October BBQ-ing, Dressing for Galas, and Celebrating Halloween

October brought with it two Board of Correction events: an October 13, meeting and a hearing on October 16th both with  public comment sections for members of the NYC community to gather and let our public officials know what we think of their plans to...

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28 Oct Legal Aid Society’s Prisoner’s Rights Project Pens Editorial ref: Commish Ponte’s Belated Written Testimony submitted to the BOC

    Prisoners' Rights Project 199 Water Street New York, NY 10038 T (212) 577-3530 F (212) 509-8433 www.legal-aid.org October 27, 2015 Stanley Brezenoff, Chair Members of the Board of Correction 1 Centre Street, Room 2213 New York, NY 10007 Re: Department of Correction Written Testimony on Proposed Rules Dear Chair Brezenoff and Members of the Board: Re: Department of...

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27 Oct As More Groups Acknowledge Need for Criminal Justice Reform, We Must Also Undo the Damages of the Past, BY NICK MALINOWSKI

  AS PUBLISHED IN THE HUFFINGTON POST, 10.27.2015 Nearly every group responsible for creating the now politically tenuous reality of mass incarceration is offering themselves up as the pivotal character in the national narrative shift toward criminal justice reform. On Wednesday, 130 prominent police chiefs from around...

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26 Oct COMMISH PONTE RESPONDS TO BLASTING BY ADVOCATES OVER RULE CHANGE PROPOSALS

[gallery ids="1418,1420,1416,1415,1414"] PRESENTED AS PUBLISHED ON 10.28.15: 1 NYC Board of Correction Public Hearing and Opportunity to Comment on Proposed Rule October 16, 2015 Prepared Testimony of Commissioner Joseph Ponte, NYC Department of Correction As the Commissioner for the NYC Department of Correction, I submit this written testimony to reiterate the importance of...

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26 Oct A Busy Week of Near-Impeachment, Finger-Pointing, Hearing-Dodging, & Collaboration w NYPD to Arrest Protesters for Embattled COBA Union leader Norman Seabrook

What has COBA Union Leader Norman Seabrook been busy doing these days when he is not overseeing arrests of protesters at the gate to the bridge to Rikers Island or dodging Board of Correction Hearings topically about reform on the island jail-complex that his Union,...

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20 Oct GET TO KNOW YOUR BOC NYC!

  // Jails Action Coalition sketched members of the Board of Correction during the October 16, 2015 hearing to consider rule changes to the charter of the Department of Correction.  These changes, introduced by the Department of Correction, headed by Commissioner Joseph Ponte, under the guise...

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17 Oct TIME IS UP! AS JAC, other Advocates & Rikers Survivors Blast Rule Change Proposals at BOC Hearing DOC & COBA FAIL TO SHOW TO DEFEND KEYSTONE INITIATIVE of THEIR 14-Point Plan…

  So many different voices were heard during the 10.16.15  hearing but the message was the same: NYC rejects DOC’s plan of dehumanization and torture. We will no longer tolerate the criminalization of people visiting loved ones on Rikers OR the psychological and physical abuse and...

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17 Oct COMMISH PONTE WANTS YOUR CHILDREN: ILLUSTRATION BY THE PEOPLE’S PUPPETS

http://peoplespuppets.org/ [photoshelter-gallery g_id="G0000pPeT_6_dtbI" g_name="The-People-s-Puppets-Art-for-Abolition" width="600" f_fullscreen="t" bgtrans="t" pho_credit="iptc" twoup="f" f_bbar="t" f_bbarbig="f" fsvis="f" f_show_caption="t" crop="f" f_enable_embed_btn="t" f_htmllinks="t" f_l="t" f_send_to_friend_btn="f" f_show_slidenum="t" f_topbar="f" f_show_watermark="t" img_title="casc" linkdest="c" trans="xfade" target="_self" tbs="5000" f_link="t" f_smooth="f" f_mtrx="t" f_ap="t" f_up="f" height="400" btype="old" bcolor="#CCCCCC" ]  ...

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15 Oct PETITION: SHUT DOWN RIKERS ISLAND

We call on you, Mayor de Blasio, Governor Cuomo and Department of Correction Commissioner Ponte to immediately shut down Rikers Island. It is a factory of human rights abuses that cannot be reformed. The Department of Correction has created a system that enables widespread physical...

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15 Oct Testimony Prep Session for Board of Correction Hearing & Pep-Rally Thursday 10/15 @ 6PM, 123 William St.

Testimony Prep Session for Board of Correction Hearing & Pep-Rally Thursday 10/15 @ 6PM, 123 William St. :Testimony Prep, Pep-Rally, Pizza Party.  Come Practice your testimony and get feedback and pointers from our experts.  OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.  PLEASE email nycjailsaction@gmail.com to RSVP. (Daytime Hours/Prep to...

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14 Oct BOC Meeting 10.13.15 JAC Member Kelsey De Avila, Rikers Services Coordinator for Brooklyn Defenders, MSW, Warns that Sending People to Court in Uniforms is Prejudicial, Possibly Racist: Polite Rebuke of NEW DOC Uniform Rollout to “Test” Rikers Populations that is in Total DISARRAY

"Court Clothese are NOT A GUESSING GAME" -Kelsey De Avila on Brooklyn Defender's Clients having to appear in court in their Rikers Jail Uniforms.   [photoshelter-gallery g_id="G0000kutRWa7w86A" g_name="BOC-Meeting-October-13-2015" width="600" f_fullscreen="t" bgtrans="t" pho_credit="iptc" twoup="f" f_bbar="t" f_bbarbig="f" fsvis="f" f_show_caption="t" crop="f" f_enable_embed_btn="t" f_htmllinks="t" f_l="t" f_send_to_friend_btn="f" f_show_slidenum="t" f_topbar="f" f_show_watermark="t" img_title="casc" linkdest="c"...

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09 Oct JAC SIGN MAKING PARTY IN ADVANCE OF WEEK OF BOC MEETINGS, HEARINGS AND RALLIES ABOUT RULE CHANGE PROPOSALS

    As usual another great team effort: Susan, Varsha, and Kaitlin brought the materials: Gale brought the catchy phrase-mixology-magic: JJ brought her superior graphic organizational skills, Susan added a dash of FONT-smithery and Natalie brought her PERFECT draftsWOMANship. [photoshelter-gallery g_id="G0000bt.lJkhxjcU" g_name="JAC-SIGN-MAKING-10-09-15" width="600" f_fullscreen="t" bgtrans="t" pho_credit="iptc" twoup="f" f_bbar="t"...

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08 Oct De Blasio signs ‘bill of rights’ for NYC jail inmates as JAC’s JJ Parish Voices Concern that There is Still Work to be Done

  De Blasio signs 'bill of rights' for NYC jail inmates as JAC's JJ Parish Voices Concern that There is Still Work to be Done. [photoshelter-gallery g_id="G0000i1hpVX2XbQg" g_name="De-Blasio-signs-bill-of-rights-for-NYC-jail-inmates-as-JAC-s-JJ-Parish-Voices-Concern" width="600" f_fullscreen="t" bgtrans="t" pho_credit="iptc" twoup="f" f_bbar="t" f_bbarbig="f" fsvis="f" f_show_caption="t" crop="f" f_enable_embed_btn="t" f_htmllinks="t" f_l="t" f_send_to_friend_btn="f" f_show_slidenum="t" f_topbar="f" f_show_watermark="t" img_title="casc" linkdest="c"...

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06 Oct JAILS ACTION COALITION RELEASES SIGN-ON LETTER FOR PARTNERS TO JOIN IN ADVOCACY AGAINST RULE CHANGE PROPOSALS TO BOC CHARTER THAT WILL ROLL BACK RIGHTS ON RIKERS AND CONTINUE TO FOSTER GUANTANAMO/ABU GHRAIB-LIKE TORTURE AND ENSLAVEMENT ON RIKERS ISLAND

IF YOU ARE AN INDIVIDUAL OR A PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATION, PUBLICATION, EDITORIAL BOARD, ADVOCACY GROUP, ET AL AND WOULD LIKE TO SIGN-ON EMAIL US AT NYCJailsActionCoalition@GMAIL.COM TO BE ADDED TO OUR LIST OF SIGN-ONS.  TELL THE MAYOR AND THE BOC THESE PROPOSALS ARE A ROLLBACK OF...

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05 Oct RIKERS: LAWLESS ISLAND The NEW WILD WEST. Bring the law to Rikers where the Bronx DA is AWOL: NEW YORK DAILY NEWS EDITORIAL Monday, October 5, 2015

LAWLESS ISLAND When violent crime spikes anywhere in New York, the NYPD floods the zone and devises strategies for improving public safety. When district attorneys identify a serious crime threat, they often form special teams of prosecutors and cops. One example: Manhattan DA Cy Vance’s anti-gang squad...

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21 Sep SEPARATED AT BIRTH: COBA UNION PRESIDENT NORMAN SEABROOK AND FMR. LIBYAN PRESIDENT QADDAFI

[gallery ids="840,839"] COBA UNION PRESIDENT NORMAN SEABROOK AND FMR. LIBYAN PRESIDENT QADDAFI: Separated at Birth AN ENEMY OF REFORM ON RIKERS ISLAND "Mr. Seabrook’s record of bullying, his attempts to undermine Mr. Ponte’s predecessors, and his history of shielding abusive officers from justice suggests that he will not...

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11 Sep Friday September 11, 2015 is the two year anniversary of Bradley Ballard’s death at Rikers Island and JAC is planning a vigil in front of the Bronx DA’s office at 3PM.

  [caption id="attachment_520" align="alignnone" width="254"] JAC MEMBERS rally outside the offices of Bronx DA Richard Johnson for the second year in a row on the anniversary of former Rikers inmate Bradley Ballard's death September 11, 2015 calling for the prosecution of the Department of Corrections employees...

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09 Sep JAC Interfaith Alliance on City Hall Steps Gives Voice to Progressive Push from Councilman Daniel Dromm

[caption id="attachment_455" align="alignnone" width="300"] JAC Interfaith Alliance on City Hall Steps Gives Voice to Progressive Push from Councilman Daniel Dromm[/caption] September 9, 2015 -Queens Councilman Daniel Dromm argues the solution to rampant violence, sexual abuse and assorted criminal activities on Rikers Island is to shut down the famous...

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Marie-Claude_Wrenn Photo shows: Marie-Claude Wrenn enters her apartment building. Wrenn, an ADA, is thought to have misplaced evidence in the, the Ruddy Quezada case that may directly have led to his release after doing 23 years for the murder of Jose Rosado.

31 Aug Marie-Claude Wrenn: A Brooklyn man who spent 24 years behind bars on a murder conviction was released from Rikers Island Monday night — hours after a veteran prosecutor resigned over false statements she made about evidence in his case

Excerpted from the NY Post Article: Man convicted by ‘lying prosecutor’ released from prison after 24 years By Leonica Valentine and Lia Eustachewich September 1, 2015 | 12:37am "...

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16 Aug DOC Proposes Inhumane and Regressive Rule Change Proposals

DOC Proposes A Raft of Aggressively Inhumane & Regressive Rollbacks to Rights on Rikers: Rule Change Requests Include Limits on Packages, Personal Belongings NOT Purchased via Unknown, & Elite Vendors AS WELL AS EXTREMELY Burdensome Restrictions to Family/Friend/ Pastoral Visits to Rikers Island.   [photoshelter-gallery g_id="G0000ryVfrJthqKw" g_name="JAC-Rev-Que-English"...

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19 Jul Mobilizing to Abolish Solitary Confinement: A Gathering of Professionals, Advocates and Concerned Citizens Dedicated to the Memory of Kalief Browder

“‪#‎SolitaryIsTorture ‪#‎KaliefBrowder ‪#‎Justice4Kalief” “Save the Date! Mobilizing to Abolish Solitary Confinement: A Gathering of Professionals, Advocates and Concerned Citizens Dedicated to the Memory of Kalief Browder Organized by The Social Workers Against Solitary Confinement Task Force Saturday October 31, 2015 (9 am-9pm) Fordham University-Lincoln Center-Pope Auditorium This features a range of presentations and workshops from the...

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11 Jun #‎Justice4Kalief #‎BlackLivesMatter

Jails Action Coalition at ‪#‎KaliefBrowder vigil ‪#‎RIPKalief ‪#‎EyesOnRikers‪#‎RikersReform ‪#‎BlackLivesMatter (photo by Mozes Zarate) Dakem X reads his tribute to ‪#‎KaliefBrowder as D stands in support (photo: Erik McGregor) ‪#‎FightThePower ‪#‎FistsUp ‪#‎Justice4Kalief ‪#‎RIPKalief ‪#‎EyesOnRikers‪#‎BlackLivesMatter  ...

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Adeboye Fadina was in charge of a heavily armored probe team that yanked inmate, Terrance Warden, 32, out of bed during the physical confrontation in June, video obtained by the Daily News shows. The footage provides an inside view of the jail rarely seen by the public.

01 Jun Rikers Island captain Adeboye Fadina promoted while facing probe for his role in violent encounter with detainee.

Adeboye Fadina   Rikers Island captain promoted while facing probe for his role in violent encounter with detainee. Adeboye Fadina was in charge of a heavily armored probe team that yanked inmate, Terrance Warden, 32, out of bed during the physical confrontation in June, video obtained by the Daily...

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Gary Heyward

15 Mar Gary Heyward: Ex-Rikers guard, who served time for selling drugs to inmates, also pimped out female officers as ‘copstitutes’ according to tell-all book published in March of 2015

Ex-Rikers guard, who served time for selling drugs to inmates, also pimped out female officers as 'copstitutes': book BY Sherryl Connelly NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Saturday, March 14, 2015, 10:09 PM A disgraced former correction officer — convicted of smuggling drugs onto Rikers Island — claims in a sensational...

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02 Feb Even as Many Eyes Watch, Brutality at Rikers Island Persists,” The New York Times, Michael Winerip and Michael Schwirtz

Between August 2014 and January 2015, 62 incarcerated individuals were seriously injured by correction officers. Despite department policies instructing correction staff to avoid head blows unless absolutely necessary, 70% of the beatings resulted in head injuries. Even as Many Eyes Watch, Brutality at Rikers Island Persists...

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15 Jan NYC Department of Investigation Report on the Recruiting and Hiring Process for NYC Correction Officers

The report describes DOI’s investigation of DOC’s recruitment and applicant screening procedures and concludes that “DOC’s hiring process has failed to recruit sufficiently talented COs and has failed, in some instances, to weed out those who would abuse their position.” Download and Read the full report...

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13 Jan 13, 2015: BOC votes to Remove all Teenagers from Solitary by January 1, 2016OC votes to Remove all Teenagers from Solitary by January 1, 2016

The Board of Correction voted to remove all teenagers under the age of 21 from Solitary Confinement and its similar cohort units by January 1, 2016.   Hon. Brianne Hammill express doubts about the tit-for-tat swap that she was being forced to vote on in order...

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photo: Austin Romain

19 Dec Correction Officer Austin Romain convicted with co-defendant Officer Khalif Phillips of smuggling marijuana, tobacco and scalpels into maximum security facilities and selling them to inmates.

Rikers Correction Officer Convicted Of Smuggling Pot, Other Items Irene Cornell reports playpause Austin Romain was charged in 2013 along with co-defendant Officer Khalif Phillips of smuggling marijuana, tobacco and scalpels into maximum security facilities and selling them to inmates....

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02 Nov Vigil for Bradley Ballard

Susan Goodwillie, social worker and JAC member at Bradley Ballard's vigil in front of District Attorney Robert Johnson's office. To this day no one has been held accountable for Mr. Ballard's homicide. Amanda Becker, MSW student and JAC member, demanding justice for Bradley. William Stanford, JAC member,...

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01 Nov NYC Department of Investigation Report on Security Failures at City DOC Facilities

The Department of Investigation (DOI) documents the significant problem of weapons and narcotics smuggling into Rikers Island and identifies two causes: insufficient protocols for screening staff upon entrance to the facility and the failure to follow the existing staff screening protocol. Read the full report and...

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28 Oct Violence Trend Report: Use of Force Incidents Involving Adolescent Inmates in New York City Jails From 2007 to Present, City of New York Board of Correction

The report documents the disparity between the use of force rate for adolescents and adults. The use of force rate has increased for both groups over the last six years. The rate for adolescents was nine times greater in 2013-2014 than it was in 2007-2008. Download...

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28 Aug Enaction of Local Law 42 in NYC

Enacted August 28, 2014, this local law amends the NYC Administrative Code to require the DOC Commissioner, in coordination with the DOHMH Commissioner, to post a quarterly report on its website regarding punitive segregation, restricted housing and clinical alternative to punitive segregation housing statistics for...

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21 Aug JAC Press Conference August 18

  Jails Action Coalition held a Press Conference on August 18 to raise awareness about brutality at Rikers Island and to support Council Member Daniel Dromm’s legislation requiring quarterly reporting on punitive segregation and other data from the Department of Corrections.  Speaking here is Glenn Martin of...

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04 Aug CRIPA Investigation of the NYC DOC Jails on Rikers Island, U.S. Department of Justice, August 4, 2014

The Department of Justice (DOJ) concluded that “there is a pattern and practice of conduct at Rikers that violates the constitutional rights of adolescent inmates. In particular, we find that adolescent inmates at Rikers are not adequately protected from harm, including serious physical harm from...

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21 Jul July 21, 2014 New York City to Pay $2.75 Million to Settle Suit in Death of Rikers Island Inmate,” The New York Times, Benjamin Weiser

Rikers Island correction officer beat inmate Ronald Spear to death The homicide of Ronald Spear occurred at the North Infirmary Command at Rikers Island where he should have received treatment for kidney disease. Instead, he died of “blunt force trauma” to the head after being assaulted...

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20 Jul Barriers to Recreation at Rikers Island’s Central Punitive Segregation Unit, City of New York Board of Correction Staff Report, July 2014

Even individuals who are sentenced to solitary confinement are entitled to at least one hour of out-of-cell recreation every day. Minimum Standard § 1-06 (g). This BOC report found that only 10% of the people incarcerated at the largest solitary confinement facility on Rikers Island,...

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12 Jul “Rikers: Where Mental Illness Meets Brutality in Jail,” The New York Times, Michael Winerip and Michael Schwirtz

  This article describes an 11-month study completed by DOHMH which found that 129 incarcerated people experienced serious injuries in altercations with DOC staff. Seventy-seven percent of those injured had a mental health diagnosis. In 80% of the cases in which incarcerated Rikers: Where Mental Illness Meets...

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01 Jul STAFF REPORT PUBLISHED: Barriers to Recreation at Rikers Island’s Central Punitive Segregation Unit, City of New York BOC Staff

Even individuals who are sentenced to solitary confinement are entitled to at least one hour of out-of-cell recreation every day. Minimum Standard § 1-06 (g). This BOC report found that only 10% of the people incarcerated at the largest solitary confinement facility on Rikers Island,...

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17 Mar “Solitary Confinement and Risk of Self-Harm Among Jail Inmates,” American Journal of Public Health, March 2014

Researchers from the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH), the agency responsible for providing healthcare to people incarcerated in NYC jails, analyzed data from 244,699 incarcerations in the NYC jail system from January 1, 2010, through January 31, 2013. The study found that...

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11 Dec Dec 11, 2013: Determination of Violation of Civil Service Law Section 210 by Certain Correction Officers in the DOC Correction Transportation Division

The Department of Citywide Administration Services found that correction officers in the Transportation Division engaged in a strike on November 18, 2013, when they refused to transport incarcerated individuals to court and medical facilities on the day that fellow correction officers Kevin Gilkes and Louis...

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