Solitary confinement

Key Elements

Solitary confinement consists in keeping an inmate alone in a cell for over 22 hours a day.  Because of the harmful effect on the person’s physical and mental well-being, solitary confinement should only be used in exceptional circumstances. It should be strictly supervised and used only for a limited period of time.

Under certain circumstances, solitary confinement can amount to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, or even torture.

Children, persons suffering from mental health disabilities, pregnant and nursing women, or women detained with their children should never be subjected to solitary confinement.