Judge Orders Syracuse to Stop Putting Kids in Solitary
In September, 2016, the New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU) and the Legal Services of Central New York sued Onondaga County, NY (Syracuse) for keeping youth in solitary confinement for up to 23 hours a day in the adult jail, often for minor offenses.
On January 3, 2017, the United States Department of Justice filed a Statement of Interest in the case, supporting the NYCLU’s position that even brief periods of solitary confinement is dangerous and harmful for youth.
On February 22, 2017, U.S. District Court Judge David Hurd granted the NYCLU’s motion for preliminary injunction. Judge Hurd’s decision and order means that the Syracuse jail can no longer place juveniles in 23-hour isolation, and any new form of discipline for juveniles must include meaningful social interaction and cannot harm the psychological health of juveniles. The injunction is particularly significant because Judge Hurd had to find that the plaintiffs were substantially likely to win their case in order to grant the motion. READ MORE HERE.