Stopmax Campaign

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Solitary Confinement: Torture in Our Prisons

On Saturday June 22nd over 61 people, many from faith communities, gathered at East Liberty Presbyterian Church to learn more about solitary confinement in our prisons. The event was organized by the American Friends Service Committee PA (AFSC) and members of East Liberty Presbyterian Church and Community House Presbyterian Church.  

Update: After CDCR Prison Hunger Strikes, Implementing Solitary Confinement Changes

On December 28, AFSC Regional Director Laura Magnani and another member of the “mediation team” met with California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) Undersecretary Terri McDonald to discuss CDCR progress on changing policies and procedures for gang validation into the SHUs (security housing units).  In that meeting, Undersecretary McDonald stated the following points.

Pelican Bay Prisoners Hunger for Justice

AFSC Healing Justice Program is supporting a hunger strike, commencing July 1, called by prisoners at California's infamous Pelican Bay State Prison.  Their five demands: 

(1) End "group punishment" -- lock-downs, most typically -- of entire yards or of all prisoners of an ethnic category -- for violations of prison rules by one prisoner, or a few

(2) End State-imposed gang labels, from which a labeled prisoner can escape only by "debriefing," i.e., testifying against others in the alleged gang

Buried alive: Long-term isolation in California youth and adult prisons

Published in May 2008 by AFSC's Laura Magnani, this report details the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation's over-use and misuse of isolation units, with six recommendations for change.

Justice Vision Papers

From 2001 to 2003, AFSC wrote a series of papers looking at the prison system in the United States. These papers discuss the use of solitary confinement and other abuses suffered by inmates. Many of these abuses are greater now than they were then, maintaining much of the relevancy of these reports.

Stopmax Arizona Campaign

The Stopmax Arizona Campaign is an integral part of the nation-wide Stopmax Campaign and its effort to end the use of long-term solitary confinement and torture in US prisons ans jails.  This video gives voice to the survivors of solitary confinement.  For more information or to get involved with the Stopmax Arizona Campaign, contact the Tucson, Arizona AFSC office at 520.623.9141 or

Prevent Prison Abuse

Transforming Criminal Justice

Solitary Confinement.

California lawmakers, corrections officials respond to AFSC.  Read the investigative reports.

Who we are

AFSC is a Quaker organization devoted to service, development, and peace programs throughout the world. Our work is based on the belief in the worth of every person, and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice. Learn more

Where we work

AFSC has offices around the world. To see a complete list see the Where We Work page.

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