Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Solitary Confinement Bill

  Action Alert -- Please Contact Senate Judiciary

MONDAY—MARCH 14, 2010 AT 1:30PM
SB 176 – Solitary Confinement Specific Populations
Sponsors: Carroll and Levy
Description: SB 176 was recently introduced and addresses the overuse of administration segregation in the Colorado Department of Corrections.  SB 176 creates requirements to be met before a state inmate, particularly an inmate with a serious mental illness, may be placed in administrative segregation. Specifically SB 176 would require:
For all state inmates who are placed in solitary confinement, this legislation would require a licensed mental health clinician to conduct an in-person mental health evaluation 30-days thereafter, to
1.       assess the inmate’s current mental status and condition,
2.       assess the inmates’ current risk of suicide or other self-harming behavior, and
3.       review all available metal health records
When a prisoner with a serious mental illness or other significant mental impairment is considered for placement in solitary confinement, this legislation would trigger an in-person mental health evaluation conducted by a licensed mental health clinician before a final placement determination can be made. If the mental health evaluation determines that placement in solitary confinement would:
1.       exacerbate his or her mental illness or impairment,
2.       negatively affect his or her emotional health or mental stability
3.       that therapeutic options (medication or treatment are not being fully utilized, then the inmate cannot be placed in solitary  confinement.
An inmate housed in administrative segregation will be ensured time to reintegrate back into general population before being released to the community.  This legislation requires that all inmates in ad-seg be reintegrated into the general prison population 6 months before their mandatory release date, parole release date, or statutory release date.
The bill also allows an inmate housed in administrative segregation the opportunity to accrue earned time to be deducted from his or her sentence if he or she meets the eligibility requirements.
Supporters of SB 176 believe that by the Colorado Department of Corrections is overusing expensive solitary confinement beds as a management tool for those afflicted with a serious mental illness rather than expanding mental health and behavioral health services. Colorado can’t afford to continue to make this choice. It is also bad public policy to allow people who have been contained in administrative segregation for long periods of time to be directly released into the community with minimal. SB176 addresses those concerns and creates a process so that we may start to alleviate these issues.
Current supporters of this bill are: The ACLU of Colorado; Colorado Behavioral Healthcare Council, Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition, Colorado Council of Churches, Colorado Criminal Defense Bar, Colorado CURE, Colorado State Public Defender, Interfaith Alliance of Colorado, Lutheran Advocacy Ministries, Mental Health America of Colorado, National Religious Coalition Against Torture, University of Denver Civil Rights Clinic, Colorado Progressive Coalition, Coloradoans for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, Center for Spirituality at Work. If your organization would like to sign on in support of this important piece of legislation please contact Pam Clifton pam@ccjrc.org
This bill will be heard in Senate Judiciary on Monday, March 14 at 1:30 p.m. in SCR 356
Please call or email Judiciary members and ask them to please support SB 176.

Senate Judiciary
Senator Morgan Carroll; Chairman (Bill sponsor—don’t need to contact)
Arapahoe D
Cap: 303-866-4879
E-mail: morgan.carroll.senate@state.co.us
Senator Lucia Guzman, Vice-Chairman;
Denver D
Cap: 303-866-4862
E-mail: lucia.guzman.senate@state.co.us
Senator Angela Giron
Pueblo D
Cap: 303-866-4878
E-mail: angela.giron.senate@state.co.us
Senator Steve King
Garfield/Mesa R
Violent Crime Investigator
Cap: 303-866-3077
E-mail: steve.king.senate@state.co.us
Senator Kevin Lundberg
Larimer R
Cap: 303-866-4853
E-mail: kevin@kevinlundberg.com
Senator Linda Newell
Arapahoe/Jefferson D
Business Consultant
Cap: 303-866-4846
E-mail: linda.newell.senate@gmail.com
Senator Jeanne Nicholson
Boulder, Clear Creek, Gilpin, Grand, Jefferson, Summit D
Public Health Nurse
Cap: 303-866-4873
E-mail: jeanne.nicholson.senate@state.co.us
Senator Ellen Roberts
Archuleta, Dolores, La Plata, Montezuma, Montrose, Ouray, San Juan, SanMiguel R Legislator
Cap: 303-866-4884
E-mail: ellen.roberts.senate@state.co.us
Senator Mark Scheffel
Douglas, El Paso, Lake, Park, Teller R
Cap: 303-866-4869
E-mail: mark.scheffel.senate@state.co.us

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I have written every single person in that article. I am not from Colorado but someone I love is in ADX 27 years of silent isolation now in PC where "they" put the extremely disturb near him to scream endlessly.
Warden Blake davis should be ashamed of the inhumanity