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In this section you'll find recent developments and news stories that are relevant to our work.

My Life as a Blind Inmate From the Marshall Project

By Burl Washington as told to Christie Thompson. This article was published in collaboration with Vice. I wasn’t blind when I entered federal prison. In fact, at the time of my arrest on April 19, 2006, I was driving my car. But I have glaucoma, and my eyesight began to fade once I was inside. […]

Guards Offer Snack Bounty To Beat Up 13-Year-Old Boy In Detention From Think Progress

A juvenile detention center in Fort Lauderdale is under fire for offering food as a reward for beating up a teenager in its custody. A 13-year-old identified as A.R. was hospitalized for three weeks after staff at the Broward Juvenile Detention Center offered a “snack bounty” in exchange for beating him up. After A.R. was […]

Florida prisons a ‘time bomb,’ union delegate tells lawmakers From the Miami Herald

BY JULIE K. BROWN Calling Florida prisons “a ticking time bomb,” members of the union representing state corrections officers called on Gov. Rick Scott and lawmakers on Wednesday to convene an emergency legislative session to address the state’s prison crisis. One recent riot, several inmate uprisings, and widespread attacks on officers and inmates have alarmed […]

Prisoner: Save money, release older inmates From the Orlando Sentinel

By Roy A. Burges, Guest Editorial I live in Union Correctional Institution, the oldest prison in Florida with 1,043 inmates older than 50. Most, like me, have been incarcerated for decades and have no hope of getting out soon. But when I read the Orlando Sentinel editorial “Clemency for silver-haired cons is a golden cost […]

Why It’s Nearly Impossible for Prisoners to Sue Prisons From the New Yorker

June 21, 2007, two guards at a jail in Baltimore assaulted an inmate named Shaidon Blake, a gang leader who had been convicted of second-degree murder, earlier that year. The guards, James Madigan and Michael Ross, had been ordered to move Blake to solitary after a supervising officer complained that he was starting trouble—“commandeering” the […]

Madness From the New Yorker

Shortly after Harriet Krzykowski began working at the Dade Correctional Institution, in Florida, an inmate whispered to her, “You know they starve us, right?” It was the fall of 2010, and Krzykowski, a psychiatric technician, had been hired by Dade, which is forty miles south of Miami, to help prisoners with clinical behavioral problems follow […]

Agency comes under fire for no-bid prison healthcare contract From the Miami Herald

The Florida Department of Corrections’ attempt to restore normalcy to its troubled prison healthcare system is now tangled in a legal dispute over the agency’s decision to award up to $31 million in fees to a politically well-connected company as part of a $268 million no-bid contract. The contract between the prison agency and Centurion […]

Prison health contract under scrutiny From the Orlando Sentinel

Department of Corrections Secretary Julie Jones is under fire for signing a $268 million, no-bid contract for prison health services after one of the state’s two vendors walked away from a five-year, $1.2 billion deal three years early. Jones signed the new contract with Centurion of Florida LLC in January, a little more than a […]

Watchdogs denounce no-bid prison contract From the Tallahassee Democrat

The company hired to provide health care to most of the state’s prison inmates stands to make millions of dollars in administrative fees and profits under a no-bid contract that ultimately could be worth more than a billion dollars. The Florida Department of Corrections last month contracted with Centurion of Florida to provide prison health […]

Lowell Correctional Institute shows long history of violence, abuse From the Miami Herald

Patrick Quercioli was big and burly, and with pumped muscles and an elaborate Indian tattoo on his arm, he looked more like a bodybuilder than a corrections officer. Though he was arrested twice — once for allegedly dealing steroids and again, on charges of beating a motorist in a fit of road rage — Quercioli […]

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