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Lawsuit: Solitary confinement in Georgia prison overly harsh | News – Atlanta, Georgia

Atlanta, Georgia 2021-09-13 16:58:00 –

Atlanta (AP) — A man in a cell in a Georgia prison is exposed to such harsh and isolated conditions and suffers from inadequate mental health care where self-harm and violence are common. I have received it.

A lawsuit filed against twelve correctional bureau officials on Friday violated the constitutional rights of the men contained in a particular area of ​​the Georgia prison in Reidsville due to the terrible conditions. It states that it is. The proceedings have been filed on behalf of three men in prisons seeking class action status, calling for “preventing prison officials from isolating those in dire situations.” ..

A correctional bureau spokeswoman, Joan Heath, said in an email Monday that the agency had not yet been filed and had not commented on the proceedings in dispute.

The ministry’s policy states that the cell confinement program is an approximately nine-month “incentive program” used to encourage “appropriate adjustments” to allow prisoners to return to general prisons. But in reality, “despite the serious health consequences of long-term cell detention,” men claim to have been detained there for months or even years.

Except for occasional showers, medical appointments, and legitimate visits, they are locked up in a 24-hour cell and have very limited access to phone calls, recreation, and social interactions, the proceedings say. .. In some areas, human excrement accumulates in the toilet and the washing mechanism is controlled by staff, causing cells to become infected with the odor of rats, roaches, urine and feces, the lawsuit said.

The lawsuit says there are not enough officers to “run the prison humanely” due to a serious shortage of personnel. This means that men often miss recreational time and sometimes do not have enough officers to take them to the shower or clinic.

According to the lawsuit, at least 12 men committed suicide in prison in the last two years, including a man in a cell.

According to the proceedings, the worst situation is not new. Prison and correctional bureau officials were informed by the bureau’s auditors, the men detained there and their lawyers, that they were at risk of serious harm, but the proceedings alleged that they did not take action.

“People spend months or years in their own cells without access to the basic necessities of dignified life, such as sunlight, fresh air, clean living spaces, and mental health treatments,” said the Southern Human Rights Center. Said Alison Ganem, a lawyer at the company. He filed a proceeding with a lawyer from Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton. “Without immediate action to deal with these unconstitutional and immoral situations, more people are likely to die.”

The proceedings require judges to order prison officers to provide at least four hours of out-of-cell time per day to those held in the cell, including one hour of outdoor time. It also orders prison staff to develop a plan within 30 days to properly address those with mental illness and those who are experiencing a mental health crisis and to provide a clean and humane condition. I’m asking the judge.

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