Solitary Census

Call it what you will, experts agree that solitary confinement sucks. The technicalities of terminology may seem like a small issue–on the inside, there can be dozens of names for the "hole" you're in – but for policy makers and and rule breakers, the official glossary category can have important implications for restrictions, record keeping, and reform. Here is our collection of solitary confinement policies from across the fifty states and the federal agencies.


New England

North Carolina


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Image by Kilho Park via Wikimedia Commons

5 Articles

Florida inmates are latest in fight against mandatory solitary for death row residents

Recent reports of solitary’s harmful effects have helped bolster cases in multiple states where the capitally-condemned await their fates.

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In North Carolina, solitary concerns highlight the limits of policy change

Changes to North Carolina’s Department of Public Safety segregation policies in the past year have highlighted another common issue nationwide in the prison reform discussion: without adequate funding, naming the problem isn’t enough.

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Texas doesn’t mince words on solitary confinement

For a term as familiar as “solitary confinement,” the official record is impressively adept at calling the practice just about anything else. In Texas, though, the phrase is used and the practice utilized - a lot.

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A look at solitary confinement policies across New England

There are many reasons incarcerated individuals are segregated from the general population, and Departments of Correction across the country have multiple ways of describing them. MuckRock takes a look at New England as we begin to tease out the “who, why, when, and for how long” of solitary confinement.

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“Solitary Confinement” may go by a different name in your state

Across the country, prisoners of all ages and backgrounds have been languishing alone in cells for weeks, months, and years on end. What are the official policies that make that okay?

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