California State Assembly: Pass SB 61 to Limit Solitary Confinement of Youth in California
We urge you to take a moment for California's youth. One final hurdle remains for passage of Senate Bill 61, a bill to limit the harmful practice of placing young people in solitary confinement in California.
Your support is needed in this final push for passage! Please take a moment to express your support for S.B. 61 to your State Assembly by using the sample email we have prepared.
In California, county and state juvenile detention facilities routinely place young people in solitary confinement, a practice that is harsh, inhumane, and ineffective. Youth receive no exposure to other people, programming, school, or exercise-- except perhaps the sound or voices of an anguished and tortured scream from somewhere down the hall.
We are the only country that continues to place youth in solitary confinement. Six states–Connecticut, Arizona, Maine, Oklahoma, Alaska, and West Virginia—have banned the punitive use of juvenile solitary confinement because it has been demonstrated to lead to mental illness, trauma, suicide, self-harm, increased recidivism and violence. These states no longer use solitary confinement as a form of punishment for youth because damaging effects of this practice have resulted in three-quarters of all youth in juvenile detention centers being diagnosed with some sort of mental illness. In addition, the vast majority (62%) of all suicides committed in juvenile detention centers happen while the youth is in solitary confinement or within 10 days of exiting such conditions.
The time is now for California to join other States and limit the use of juvenile solitary confinement. We need your help to get this done. Children should not be placed in these dehumanizing conditions. Moreover, if such extreme measures are to be used, they need to be regulated.
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