Report released on segregation of inmates with mental illness

Anna Guy
AVID attorney

Segregation disproportionately affects inmates with mental illness, according to a report released today by the AVID Prison Project, and experts assert most inmates acquire mental illness or experience worsened symptoms as a result of conditions in segregation. Today, 80,000 to 100,000 inmates are segregated in U.S. prisons. They will remain isolated in small single person cells, 22 to 24 hours per day, for up to years at a time. Even President Obama, the first sitting president to tour a prison, recognized that mental illness can worsen in segregation and inmates with mental illness are more likely to commit suicide.

Locked Up and Locked Down: Segregation of Inmates with Mental Illness chronicles advocacy efforts undertaken across the country on behalf of inmates with mental illness. The Amplifying Voices of Inmates with Disabilities (AVID) Prison Project, in partnership with the National Disability Rights Network and protection and advocacy agencies from twenty states, released the report, which calls for national prison reform measures.

Locked Up and Locked Down: The online multimedia report

Locked Up and Locked Down: Report page

Locked Up and Locked Down: Press release

AVID Prison Project page