Prisoner Recreation: Right or Privilege?

Prisoner Recreation: Right or Privilege?
Mar28

A participant in a corrections law training session once asked me in frustration why prisoners should be entitled to recreation. He pointed out he had to pay $75 a month to belong to an exercise club, while his county had just consented to build a fully-equipped exercise room for the inmates in the jail. Is recreation or exercise a right, or a privilege? The first thing which must be done is to distinguish between recreation and...

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Using Solitary Confinement as an Inmate Management Tool – Part II

An important discretionary tool in maintaining safety and security is solitary confinement. Solitary confinement is a highly effective tool needed and utilized by jail and prison administrators.  This allows for the separation of inmates who have demonstrated, through their actions, that they pose a threat to the safety of inmates, staff and the public. Administrators have no option but to isolate inmates who continue to engage in...

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Using Solitary Confinement as an Inmate Management Tool – Part I

Corrections professionals are encountering an increasing trend challenging the use of solitary confinement.  The conflict is mostly being stirred up by the media, legislatures, inmate advocate groups and the public. Some have tried to link isolated incidences where solitary confinement was in use with an in-custody death and or other situations regarding an inmate’s behavior, often tied to mental health issues. These groups are...

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The Implications of Brady-Giglio for Law Enforcement

Editor’s Note:  Because the language in the Brady-Giglio policy references law enforcement agencies and police officers specifically, those terms have been used throughout this article for consistency.  However, it is important to note that the Brady-Giglio policy encompasses those who work in all areas of law enforcement,and as such,is applicable to all corrections staff/officials working in jails and prisons as well. The...

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Morale in Detention Facilities

Morale What is more important than staff morale?  Probably safety, security, custody, care, health and welfare; however, doesn’t morale coincide with each and every one of these critical issues when running a constitutionally sound Detention Center?  The question of morale in corrections is a difficult subject in any facility.  On a great day, we may get a C+ for morale, so boosting morale or “managing” morale is a daunting task.  We...

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Staff Training and Prisoner Litigation

by Gary W. DeLand Editor’s Note: This article discusses constitutional issues associated with training. In 1971, after nearly a decade as a deputy sheriff working mostly as a plainclothes investigator, I found myself assigned to a completely alien environment—the Salt Lake County Jail.  Other than dropping prisoners off after I had arrested them, my experience in, and knowledge of, the jail was virtually nonexistent.  I took...

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