Magazine article Corrections Forum

"Extreme Isolation, Deprivation" in Calif. Prison Behavior Units

Magazine article Corrections Forum

"Extreme Isolation, Deprivation" in Calif. Prison Behavior Units

Article excerpt

Sacramento Bee

"Standing over a small metal sink, a prisoner pours water over his head and face. It's usually the only way to bathe, and offers a brief respite from staring at barren, pockmarked walls in a tiny cell." The Sacramento Bee gives that description of daily life inside the "behavior unit" at one California prison. Inmate Tally Molina is allowed out of his cell once every third day for a quick shower. Asked how he occupies his time, Molina spoke of meals and some reading, but added: "Nothing really breaks the monotony."

Behavior units were created in six California prisons as a middle ground between the general population and security housing that inmates call "the hole." The behavior units were designed for troublemakers or those who reject cellmates. …

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