The D.C. Council must immediately ban solitary confinement. The United Nations’ Standard Minimum Rules for Prisoners defines 15 days in prolonged isolation (23 hours a day) as torture. After 14 days of prolonged isolation, over one-third of people became psychotic or suicidal. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the D.C. Department of Corrections (DOC) instituted one of the longest medical lockdowns in the nation. For close to 500 days, the DOC kept people in their cells for 22-23 hours a day. Rather than curb the spread of the virus, in 2020, the conditions of incarceration caused 526.9 additional COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people, the highest number of additional cases linked to mass incarceration in the U.S.
Status: Not passed in 2022. Reintroduced in 2023.