ACTION ALERT: TELL GOVERNOR QUINN JUST DO IT! @ Tamms Year Ten
Posted on June 19, 2012
Dear Governor Quinn,We support you for your smart and principled decision to close the supermax.
Do not support the plan to expand Tamms into a new medium-security prison.
• Conversion would be difficult, costly and unrealistic. Tamms was designed to impose sensory deprivation and inhibit movement. A regular prison requires a yard, cafeteria, classrooms, library and contact visitation area. Tamms has none of these. Illinois is not likely to find millions of dollars to rebuild this prison. If you keep it open, who knows what will happen. Close it.• No new prison construction. Expanding the supermax from 160 to 1000 men is essentially building a new prison. Other states are safely reducing their prison populations and closing prisons, and Illinois should be too. Don’t expand a prison just to save jobs. Put jobs where we need them.• Prison-building is not a humane or cost-effective solution to overcrowding. Overcrowding does not justify building new beds. Our prison overpopulation should be addressed with diversion programs, earned sentence credits, improved parole practices, and services that lower recidivism.• Treatment not Tamms. Thousands of people with mental illnesses are incarcerated in Illinois and disproportionately placed in isolation. This is both cruel and exorbitantly expensive. Yet critical services, including mental health treatment, substance abuse counseling and rehabilitative programming are severely underfunded. The $26 million Tamms budget allocation would be better spent on programs that prevent incarceration and decrease recidivism.
3 – WATCH THE CONGRESSIONAL HEARINGS ON SOLITARY CONFINEMENT TODAY
Today Senator Durbin is holding Congressional Hearings called “Reassessing Solitary Confinement: The Human Rights, Fiscal and Public Safety Consequences.” These hearings will support the growing consensus that supermax prisons are uniquely cruel, destructive and expensive — and a historic wrong-turn.
Watch the hearings here Tuesday, June 19 at 10:00am.