“In the Box I feel like death… After a while I start talking to ants, crickets or any other living or imaginary thing I can think of so I do not totally lose what is left of my mind… This is the damage that happens by throwing people into cages to rot under the pretense that more punishment, isolation, and deprivation will make them change for the better." — S, 18 months in solitary confinement in New York
Solitary confinement (also known as the Box, the Bing, and the SHU) means confining people in small, sometimes windowless cells for 22 to 24 hours a day without meaningful human contact, programming, or therapy. This practice causes extreme suffering and permanent psychological and neurological damage, harming not only the incarcerated people who endure it, but also the families and communities to which they will one day return. Despite these facts, New York utilizes isolated confinement at rates well above the national average, holding thousand of people in isolation for months, years, and even decades.
The Campaign for Alternatives to Isolated Confinement (CAIC) is leading the fight against the use of prolonged solitary confinement in New York's prisons and jails. We helped to write the Humane Alternatives to Long-Term (HALT) Solitary Confinement Act, the most progressive piece of anti-solitary legislation in the country, which is currently gaining momentum in the New York State legislature.
CAIC needs your support todayto help us continue our push to #HALTsolitary in our prisons and jails. Your donation will support community organizing and outreach, advocacy with state legislators and the governor, honorariums for survivors of solitary and family members of people in solitary who speak out at our events, and other direct costs. Donations in any amount are valued and deeply appreciated. Please help us end the torture of solitary confinement in New York!
For more information about CAIC or the HALT Solitary Confinement Act, or to sign up for our May 2 Advocacy Day, please visit www.nycaic.org