I read this morning on The Intercept about a recently filed class action lawsuit against the Santa Clara Sheriff Department by the Berkeley-based Prison Law Office.
I decided to write to the council and mayor, Jamie L Mathews, of the city of Santa Clara, deploring the actions of the correctional officers of the Santa Clara County prison system. (they responded and told me to contact the sheriff department. Well, at least now they are aware of the situation, and if they don’t do anything they may be blamed for what the sheriff dept is doing.)
Here is my open letter:
My name is Brian Carrillo and I am a resident of Southern California.
I have recently read about a class action lawsuit involving the Santa Clara Sheriff Department and inmates of California jails who are forced into solitary confinement cells.
These inmates often get less than 3 hours outside of these cells A WEEK. I highly deplore these actions taken by Santa Clara’s Sheriff and I ask that Mayor Jamie L Mathews of the City of Santa Clara address this problem by condemning the use of solitary confinement when it is not absolutely necessary.
This should not be happening anywhere in the world, let alone a place like California and Santa Clara County.
These men who are put into solitary confinement do not pose any serious threat to jail staff and the psychological damage this is inflicting upon them is inhumane. These conditions are similar to the concentration camps of Nazi Germany, where prisoners are forced to coexist with vermin, sleep in the feces of other inmates, and have little to no communication with loved ones.
I hope you seriously consider what I have written to you today and I look forward to seeing the progress made by the leaders of Santa Clara County in the near future in regard to how nonviolent criminals are treated in our correctional facilities here in California.
I suggest readers take a look at the articles written by The Intercept regarding this case and the conditions of inmates of California jails who are forced into solitary confinement.