Statement from the Vaughn 17 (06/01/2021)

June 1, 2021

“This message is on behalf of the Vaughn 17 and others held in solitary confinement under the PA DOC. We are all already at or are about to be transferred to SCI Phoenix or SCI Greene, where the PA DOC has dedicated a building at each facility solely to warehouse people in long term solitary confinement (and has labeled it the Intensive Management Unit, or the IMU).

Here, we are housed in our cells with only 5 hours of recreation per week, no programs, no schooling, no jobs, or anything else involving rehabilitation. We have been housed in this way (some completely misconduct-free) with no way out.

Restricted Release is the label the PA DOC gives a person when they want to warehouse them in long term solitary confinement. The way Restricted Release is designed is meant to break a person down on all levels.

First it destroys you mentally, then physically, then emotionally, leaving most of the affected individuals hallucinating, contemplating self-harm or suicide, or actually carrying it out.

There is nothing productive or humane about locking up a human being in a box and letting them out for 5 hours a week. If PA DOC chooses to go into rehabilitating people and help them to become better human beings, then long term solitary confinement has to go.”

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Abolitionist Law Center

Abolitionist Law Center

ALC is a nonprofit law firm fighting to protect prisoners, and a community organizing project aiming to build a world without prisons. abolitionistlawcenter.org