Torture Chambers Within Our State Prisons: Why We Must Stand with Those in Solitary

5 core demandsJustice Not Jails is about three main things:

  • keeping people out of prison and jail,
  • helping the formerly incarcerated re-establish themselves when they come out, and also
  • supporting those who suffer abuse inside.

peter laarman

Tonight we will gather in Norwalk to show our support for the California inmates (10,000 men at any given time) who are subjected to the torture of solitary confinement within the state prison system: lockdown within the dreaded Security Housing Units (or SHUs, as they are called).  We also include a first-person account of what the SHU experience is like, written by a Mother Jones reporter who was also held in solitary in Iran.

Torture in our own backyard is something we would rather look away from. But it is our religious and ethical duty to pay attention – and to demand that “liberal” California do away with this horrendous affront to human rights and human dignity.

Peter Laarman
Justice Not Jails

About Peter Laarman

Rev. Peter Laarman serves on the Justice Not Jails steering committee. He formerly directed Progressive Christians Uniting, the LA-based network of activist individuals and congregations that first launched Justice Not Jails in 2012 as a multifaith initiative. He served as the senior minister of New York’s Judson Memorial Church from 1994 to 2004. Ordained in the United Church of Christ, Peter spent 15 years as a labor movement strategist and communications specialist prior to training for ministry.


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