Inmates in prisons across the country have been striking since September 9th, the 45th anniversary of the Attica prison riots. Prisoners are utilizing both labor strikes and hunger strikes to protest mass incarceration and prison labor conditions. One organization heavily involved in the strike, the Free Alabama Movement, issued a
On Thursday, October 6th, PLAP Board Members Dennis Dillon, Annie Manhardt, and Katherine Robinson testified at a public hearing regarding proposed changes to the Massachusetts Department of Correction regulations. As an organization, we submitted testimony regarding proposed changes to the regulations that govern disciplinary hearings, use of force, and grievance procedures.
Last week new PLAPpers participated in our annual cross-examination training. This is an important training as it prepares new 1Ls to take on their own disciplinary hearings and teaches them basic advocacy skills. Lawyers from across Boston volunteered their time on Wednesday evening to help students with the difficult task of cross-examining
With the new school year now in full swing, PLAP is happy to announce that this year it has added more new members than ever! 122 students attended New Member Orientation last week. In order for new members to learn how PLAP works and how to best help our clients,
On Thursday, September 8, WBUR released the second half of its two-part series on the release of juvenile lifers--people who were sentenced to life in prison before the age of 18. The series follows two Massachusetts men, Greg Diatchenko and Joe Donovan, who have recently been released on parole after
On Wednesday, the Lowell Sun published an article by Jean Trounstine discussing the case of Wilfred Dacier. The Massachusetts Parole Board granted Dacier parole in 2010, specifying that he would need to be released to a DMH facility for inpatient care. When DMH found that Dacier did not actually require
On Friday, July 22, Democratic presidential nominee announced her running mate, Tim Kaine. Kaine is a current U.S. Senator, a former Virginia governor, and a graduate of Harvard Law School. He is also a PLAP alum, having worked on the project throughout his time in law school. Senator Kaine met
On Wednesday, July 13, 2016, the Massachusetts Senate passed "An Act relative to Medical Placement of Terminal and Incapacitated Inmates". This Act would have allowed for conditional medical parole of inmates with a terminal illness or permanent incapacitation, allowing them to receive medical or palliative care outside of the prison system.
WASHINGTON — Baltimore community organizer Perry Hopkins, 55, is looking forward to stepping into a voting booth for the first time in his life this election season.
Hopkins lost his never-exercised right to vote when he was convicted for drug and other offenses. He gained it back last month when Maryland
“Angola Prison, 1980,” by Keith Calhoun and Chandra McCormick.
For several weeks in February and March, the Whitney Museum’s fifth-floor gallery has been drenched in the slamming of gates, the rattling of keys and the bellowing of prisoners and guards. The artist Andrea Fraser recorded the sounds at Sing Sing, the
WASHINGTON- President Obama on Monday banned the practice of holding juveniles in solitary confinement in federal prisons, saying it could lead to “devastating, lasting psychological consequences.”
The move, which Mr. Obama outlined in an op-ed article published by the Washington Post on Monday night, adds the weight of the federal government to a
Adam Foss, assistant DA in Suffolk Count, Massachusetts, imagines a system that helps young offenders stay out of prison — and instead helps them on a path to a productive life.
Through Foss's eyes, the outcome of law school was to ultimately make more money. However, that view changed on
On October 14, three PLAPpers joined individuals and organizations from across the Commonwealth at the State House to testify before the Joint Committee on the Judiciary, in support of bills aimed at improving criminal justice. Despite little advance notice, a dozen PLAPpers volunteered to do research and draft written testimony
Idaho inmates and their friends and families will have more affordable costs for telephone calls, due to a recent decision by the Federal Communications Commission.
The FCC more than two years ago used Idaho as an example of high telephone costs for inmates and their families and friends, citing costs of up to
During the latter months of 2014, Black & Pink, conducted a survey of our prisoner membership. Nearly 1,200 prisoners responded to our 133-question survey, producing the largest ever dataset available on the experiences of LGBTQ prisoners in the country. The intent of this survey was to get some truth out
On September 4th, just before students began working in Harvard Law School’s clinics and student practice organization, the Prison Legal Assistance Project and the Office of Clinical and Pro Bono Programs hosted a lunch talk entitled Public Service Litigation and Solitary Confinement by Jules Lobel, Professor of Law
MARION, Ala. — Judge Marvin Wiggins’s courtroom was packed on a September morning. The docket listed hundreds of offenders who owed fines or fees for a wide variety of crimes — hunting after dark, assault, drug possession and passing bad checks among them.
“Good morning, ladies and gentlemen,” began Judge Wiggins,
On one side of the stage at a maximum-security prison here sat three men incarcerated for violent crimes.
On the other were three undergraduates from Harvard College.
After an hour of fast-moving debate on Friday, the judges rendered their verdict.
The inmates won.
The audience burst into applause. That included about 75 of the
Fernando Delgado of the Human Right's Clinic and his students revel the voices of the prisoners in Brazil.
“Fernando’s work in detention centers in Brazil is unparalleled by anything being done by any clinic or NGO outside Brazil,” said Cavallaro. “He’s documented the most serious abuses in the most dangerous centers
There are a number of ways to put a price tag on the United States’s shameful mass incarceration system. On the most superficial level, $80 billion is how much it costs to keep more than 2.4 million people in our jails and prisons. Then there are the costs to those incarcerated themselves,