1. Tennessee –A lawsuit raises inadequate treatment for claims diabetic inmates as well as claims of under-staffing since the private prison firm, CoreCivic Inc., opened Trousdale Turner Correctional Facility in 2015. Last year an audit reported that gangs run rampant in Trousdale because of insufficient security, according to the Nashville Tennessean. Understaffing is also key to the diabetes lawsuit, alleging that Trousdale goes on lockdown for weeks at a time — causing diabetic treatment to become worse.
2. Georgia –A federal court has ruled that private prison firm CoreCivic Inc. can be held liable for forcing detained immigrants to work for as little as $1 a day to clean, cook and maintain a prison it operates, the Southern Poverty Law Center reports. Detainees who refuse to work are threatened with solitary confinement and the loss of access to basic necessities, like food, cloth- ing, products for personal hygiene, and phone calls to loved ones, in violation of federal anti-trafficking laws, according to the law- suit.
3.1 Austin, Tex. – Lewis Conway Jr. is the first formerly incarcerated person in Texas to run for public office, reports Spectrum News Staff.
3.2 Atlanta– Two years into litigation about prisoners who spend years in solitary confinement in Special Management Unit onto the streets and to restrict the department’s overuse of solitary confinement for people with serious mental illness,” reports Courthouse News Service. The July 31 letter quotes expert witness Craig Haney as calling Georgia’s solitary confinement system one of the most draconian in the nation.
4. Jackson, Miss. — Prisoners represented by the American Civil Liberties Union and Southern Poverty Law Center claim that a privately run prison is so unsanitary, unhealthy and unsafe that it violates the U.S. Constitution’s 8th Amendment protection against cruel and unusual punishment, reports The Associated Press. The allegations prompted a federal judge to order an expert to re-examine the prison.
5. Montgomery, Ala. – Corrections officials say 51 of the state’s 180 inmates on Death Row have chosen nitrogen hypoxia as an execution method after lawmakers approved it as a choice, The Associated Press reports.
6. Florida – Broward County inmates with serious mental illnesses suffer unnecessarily, sometimes without treatment, in inhumane conditions, according to a recent report, accord- ing to the South Florida Sun Sentinel. The 88-page report was part of federal monitoring of the county’s jails. The report reviewed care provided by the sheriff’s office, which oversees four jails.
7. Texas – Criminal justice and child protective services professionals told legislators that the Texas is severely lacking in treatment services to combat the opioid crisis and other substance use problems, the Statesman reports. Officials say there is a huge gap between individuals’ needs and the state’s ability to serve, with many people in rural areas often having to drive far distances to gain access to treatment.
8. Austin, Tex.–The state prison system considerably cut the cost of inmate calls home by more than 75 percent with a new phone contract more favorable to inmates and their families, the Houston Chronicle reports. Currently, instead of paying an average of 26 cents per minute, prisoners will pay 6 cents per minute no matter the destination of the call. Also, the limit on phone calls was increased from 20 minutes to 30 minutes.
9. Boston – The American Federation of Teachers is asking its union members to cut their exposure to investment firms that have directed millions of dollars into private prisons companies CoreCivic Inc. and GEO Group Inc., reports Reuters.
PPI’s “Correctional Control: Incarceration and Supervision by State” is the first report to aggregate data on all types of correctional control nationwide.