soc209- lc - The Effects of PunishmentMental Illness and solitary Confinement
3 office hours this week: today - 230 - 330
tues - 1- 3
wed - 1 -3
Lecture Outline - the relationship between mental health & confinement system
- gender difference
- the effects of solitary confinement
- the use of solitary confinement in Canada in particular for eg, when you can use the
- they have rules as to how long you can stay there, who is allowed to get in there under
what conditions etc.
- case of Ashley Smith
Mental Health and the Criminal Justice ssytem - over the past 30 eyars, Canada has
seen a massive increase in their population - we seen this as a rise of punitive
punishment come in with the decline of rehabilitation.
- the rise of people with mental illness becomes very important - overepresetantion of
aboriginal in provincial and federal system
- the rise of the population coincicdenet with a massive change - known as
deinstutiontalization. =- after the creation of anti depressions nad medication - there
was assumptions that you dont have to keep them away for long time on confinement -
you can use medication so the 1970s was a new process- shut down mental hospitals -
and shut down beds - and these psycho poeple came onto the street.
- the lack of community mental health - often gets these individuals in contact with the
police becuase hteir behavour can be disruptive etc.
- that can bring attention for spcial agents of control eg, polic e- if someone is yelling at
the street and there is no one near them - they often do crime, heavy theft, property
related stuff and they get caught.
- mental illness people are no more likely to commit crime than us. - but there was a
perception that they will.
- Steven harper cartoon -he has his beaucrat in front of him. - this is common reaction
to the problem of poor and mentally ill - they end up in the prison population - so our
prison population booms because of this.
- 80 are one drugs, and 61 hhave dianigosis why?
1. unfrotunatly, medication are used to control behaviour not treat illness - if someone
is being disruptive sometimes antipsychotic mediactiaons are given and anti
depressants are given in order to depress behaviour and that stop their behaviour 2: the
use of meds for control - people are properly diagnosed - the increase of medication in
community -e xtends in the prisons nad people who get into prison are not evualated
there properly either. The poor dianisgoses prior to incarceration leaves many poeple
with profound mental illness - very select group for eg, schizo, bipolar conditiosn, anti
social personalty disroder, extreme forms of depresison. In order to even get access to
whatever treatment is available - they really do limit who is able to get access to this
medication.* That really means anyone who is a bit drepressed, have some anxiet, and other peronsality disorders there often not classified as mentally ill - so if they behave
inpaporatioy - their behaviour is seen as inapprproaite.
Soliatry confinement -: is not really good. - under these conditions - its a very strict
form of punishment - with peopel with mental illness that becomes very concerning.
default tool for control - soliatary confinement*
Reasearch on SOliatary confinement
- researchers found that spending lots of time in confinement - has negative results -
long term psychiatric patients - in cprisons - creastes more psyactic symtpons.
- so if you didn't go into confinement with a mental illness, you most likely leave with a
mental illness. (Kupers)
- he aruges becusae of the antispychotic meds dont work to improve behaivour - and
beusae mental illness gets worse over time, there is a vicious cycle of acting out tha
thappne s- so when prisons get distubed nad confined in the cage for a long time - they
become more and more disruptive - and escalates violents for others - etc.
- large study in the US - biug super max prison - he wnted to knwo whterh or not
spending long times of segregation - typicaly 90 days or more - whether or not that had
siginicatn impact on person. Appetite - peope wouldnt be eating, sleeping: wouldnt be
able to sleep becuase of the lights on, anxiety and panic atacks - anything can make
them angry and agittaed, loss of control, - examples where they put animals in the cage
for along time - the animal gets disruptive.
- wage and los of control, apanoia, deprivation - will make poeple have alternative
thoughts, self relation - harming thsemvles by cutting, by ligature stragulation, babging
their head on their wall, breaking things, such as glass.
- peopel who go in confeinemnt - have higher suicidal thoughts - emotional pattern
changes - not people woh can stick withr eality well for along time - have to change
their behaviour often.
Effects of Soliatary Confinement in Canada
- are they harmful of not of confinement?
Mortiuk - segregated inmantes have low tolerance for fustration, tend to be hostiel,
thrill seeking, not relaflective, manipulative etc. (this is for 90 dyas or more)
- there are some short term of confinement - 60 days or less has no impact on silairty
confinement** some researchers say this.
- is it just an issue of time?
- excluding beings from social interaction can become a seriousl amtter.
3 reasons why someone can go into confinement:
1. you are adanger to others - so we have to remove you from genral population.
2. your prensece on the population makes it dicciult to make it investiaget what
3. or your presence in the general population - you are a risk to yousrself - and thus you
have to be removed
who are those kind of people? - 3. sick people who are suicidal, , pedafiles, rapists,serious self harming behaviours, notorious and have certain kind of convictions,
typically men, they are the lowest ranking imnates of all - and they are more likely to
be at risk at hurting poeple.
- peopel who are transgernder, gay, lesbians - ask to be in soliatry confinement becusae
of their gender they are scared to be haraseed.
- the use of solilatyar confinemen t in Canda - and set up the segreagation 1997 -
important date - investigation 722 indidivuals on administarteve segregation - they
found that 50% of them were there voluntarliy, nad 50% were involutnarily.
3/4 were 90 dyas or less. - these are nto the poeple that they are concerned with.
- 76 - were less than 90s, 24 - were there longer than 90 days - they were oncerned with
those that are longer in 90 days. - long time.
- a lot of thee individuals - as a means of waiting for transfer- they were put in the hole.
Specifica taks force findings - one that segregated inmanes were put in not based on of
the three points that were entioned before,
- if we loo at punsihment general level - going to prison - nayhting that happens in the
prison - has to be not extra primitive.
-the time frames are not necassrily followed - and the corectional serice of canaada -
even tho the law asya you are not allwoed to ghave someone in segregation for more
than 60 days without an review - it is not really folowed.
inamtes wer also not given any inform