Let's Change The Outcome

Justice Department proposes changes to solitary confinement guidelines

Last year President Obama proposed that there should be changes to the procedures that land inmates in solitary confinement. Before this proposal, even low-risk offenders could be placed in solitary for various offenses or infractions. The Justice Department (or “DOJ”) just completed the review and released a report detailing the findings.


The report determines that solitary confinement is harmful on inmates. Solitary confinement, (or “restrictive housing”) although necessary for some inmates, should be used sparingly and “never as a default solution.” The DOJ compiled a list of “Guiding Principles” as best practices for the sequestering of dangerous inmates. The principles include:

  • Solitary confinement should not be used as a general form of confinement, i.e. it should always have a purpose.
  • Prison officials should be able to articulate the specific justifications supporting solitary confinement for every inmate. These reasons should justify both the (1) confinement and (2) the duration.
  • The housing should strike a balance between the health needs of the inmate and the safety requirements for the correctional officers and wider prison community.
  • There should be a plan to re-integrate inmates into the general population.
  • All correctional facilities must regularly review inmates in solitary confinement.

These guidelines, while they may result in a change in federal prisons, are not binding on the states. Most inmates, and those in restrictive housing, are held in state facilities.

Solitary confinement is a very real possibility if you are sent to prison for the right reasons and cause the right incident while inside. Solitary confinement or restrictive housing is very detrimental to your mental health; don’t think that you are different, you probably are not. Many of these cells are small and prevent you from full stretching, have no windows and do not permit you books or television. You are kept totally isolated from stimuli or human contact. It is much harder than most believe or give it credit.

If you are facing serious criminal charges, then you may want to speak to an attorney. Solitary confinement is just one of the many punishments that may await you.



Recent Posts

How can a DUI conviction impact my commercial driver’s license?

On Behalf of Ryan Beasley Law | Apr 8, 2022 | Drunk Driving | Commercial vehicles are a common sight on the South Carolina roads. Trucks go to, from and through the state delivering and carting items that are vital to everyday life. This can include food, materials,...

What defenses are there for domestic violence charges?

Every relationship has times when you and your partner will disagree. An argument can feel very after both parties have had a chance to cool off than it does while it is happening. In some cases, a disagreement can get out of hand or misinterpreted, leaving both...

How a DUI can threaten your college education

College is an exciting time for young adults. Newfound independence often comes with having to make important decisions on your own, including whether to drink and drive. Unfortunately, millions of college students choose to drive while intoxicated. While you may be...

Bill could lead to harsher penalties after drug overdoses

In South Carolina and across the United States, opioids are garnering significant attention. This is understandable given the number of people who are having problems with these types of drugs. Specifically, fentanyl is drawing scrutiny from state and federal law...

Do you know the importance of jury selection in your case?

There’s a lot to consider when building your criminal defense. While you may want to work with prosecutors early on to try to mitigate the fallout from your case, and you certainly want to gather evidence that contradicts the prosecution’s case, you can’t neglect the...

Do You Need Legal Advice? Don’t Wait.

Get Help Now


Visit Our VIDEO CENTER To Find Out More