After a request by the city’s Department of Corrections (DOC) for greater control over the flow of contraband, the New York City’s Board of Correction (BOC) is considering strict new mail and visitation rules [PDF] for its jails. The request comes after a recent increase in violence due to the proliferation of
Last week, the New York City Council sent eight bills to Mayor Bill DeBlasio’s desk aimed at bringing greater transparency to the city’s jails. The wave of legislation was introduced this past spring and its passage marks the latest efforts by the city to reign in the brutal culture of violence and impunity that has reigned inside its jails for years.
A transgender inmate was raped by a corrections officer in a medical clinic on Rikers Island and the New York City Department of Correction has declined to punish him for the last three years, according a federal civil rights lawsuit filed this week. The inmate, known as “MT,” claims Corrections Officer L. Galan sexually harassed her “openly and repeatedly” for months before raping her in the clinic, where security cameras could not capture the encounter.
New York City will begin a surveillance pilot program aimed at keeping juvenile defendants accused of committing certain felonies off of Rikers Island. As The New York Times reported on August 14, eligible youth between the ages of sixteen and eighteen will be outfitted with lightweight bracelets tethered electronically to smartphones that are to be carried with them at all times and cannot be turned off.
A lawsuit filed in federal court last week alleges guards on Rikers Island brutally beat a man visiting his longtime partner at the Eric M. Taylor Center because he is gay. Thomas Hamm argues he was “denied access to public accommodations and services on the basis of his actual and/or perceived sexual orientation, suffered serious physical injuries, and was deprived of his liberty.”
The New York Daily News reports the family of Kalief Browder will serve New York City with a $20 million wrongful death lawsuit. Browder’s case was one of the driving forces behind the jail reform movement in New York City, prompting Mayor Bill de Blasio to order changes to the city’s solitary confinement policy for juvenile inmates.