12 News

Hospitalizations and HVAC repairs: The cost of extreme heat in Arizona’s women’s prison

Jan. 26, 2024
“'It's unfortunately becoming commonplace in a lot of particularly southern states and Texas where I live,' said Michele Deitch, who leads the Prison and Jail Innovation Lab at the University of Texas at Austin. 'I'm not surprised by it. But I'm still horrified that anybody should be asked to live in those kinds of conditions.'”
Louisiana Jail Standards Report

Recommendations For Revised Jail Standards, Oversight, and Programming for Jails in the State of Louisiana

Oct. 1, 2023
This report was published in response to House Concurrent Resolution No. 89 (HCR89), which was passed by the Louisiana House of Representatives in 2021. HCR89 directed PJIL to work with the Louisiana Sheriffs Association and the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections to expand upon Louisiana's Basic Jail Guidelines (BJG). In this report, Michele and Alycia recommend modifications to the BJG, changes to existing methods of enforcement, and pathways for expanding programming in local jails.
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'I'm fighting for my life': Inside Alabama's prisons during ongoing labor strike

Sept. 29, 2022
PJIL Director Michele Deitch calls for oversight in Alabama prisons in story of prison labor strike.
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Families shocked by learning of inmates’ death in Linn jail

July 24, 2022
Michele calls attention to how a family's grief of an incarcerated loved one's death can be made worse by the way the news is delivered. She advocates for death notifications to be as quick and empathetic as possible.
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Punitive Excess

April 11, 2022
Michele played a key role in this publications that is the sole finalize for the 2022 Silver Gavel Awards for Media and the Arts from the American Bar Association. These awards recognize outstanding work that fosters the American public’s understanding of law and the legal system, and are the ABA’s highest honor in recognition of this purpose. Michele contributed to this chapter on correctional oversight.
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Mental Competency Consequences: The Hidden and Unreliable Data that Texas Tracks … or Doesn’t

April 11, 2022
Michele was interviewed on camera and featured in this piece that is a finalist in the "Multimedia" category for the 2022 Silver Gavel Awards for Media and the Arts from the American Bar Association. These awards recognize outstanding work that fosters the American public’s understanding of law and the legal system, and are the ABA’s highest honor in recognition of this purpose.
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The Landscape of Recent State and County Correctional Oversight Efforts

March 15, 2022
Michele provides significant contributions to the Brennan Center team in this essay that explores the land­scape of prison and jail over­sight reform since 2018.
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“No Light. No Nothing.” Inside Louisiana’s Harshest Juvenile Lockup

March 10, 2022
Michele comments on the mismanaged state of the nation's juvenile justice facilities.
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New bill proposes civilian oversight for Massachusetts prisons

Jan. 19, 2022
In coverage on Massachusetts' new bill to establish independent civilian oversight of the state's correctional facilities and Michele comments on the increasing momentum of prison oversight bodies.
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Independent Oversight Is Essential for a Safe and Healthy Prison System

Nov. 3, 2021
Published as part of the Brennan Center for Justice’s series on punitive excess, Michele identifies independent correctional oversight as a critical but often overlooked tool that provides a window into one of our most opaque public institutions, one that denies elected officials the option of remaining purposefully ignorant about correctional conditions.