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The secret's out
Need free health care? Why not just go to prison?
| July 15, 2011
Mentally ill inmates need more help
Prisoner advocates would like the new Corrections commissioner to strengthen his reform of the Maine State Prison by giving more care to the many mentally ill prisoners he is releasing from often-lengthy solitary confinement into the prison's general po
| June 24, 2011
Top prison officials fired
In a continuing shakeup at the troubled Maine State Prison, new Corrections commissioner Joseph Ponte has fired six top officials including its controversial security chief, Deputy Warden James O'Farrell.
| June 17, 2011
Reform comes to the supermax
Less than three months into his job, Maine's new corrections commissioner Joseph Ponte has begun to dramatically reform the Maine State Prison's long-troubled solitary-confinement "supermax" unit.
New commissioner cuts population by more than half; prisoner-rights advocates help in the reform
| May 27, 2011
Corporate prison bill 'carried over'
Although LD 690, A BILL TO MAKE IT EASIER FOR "EXILED" PRISONERS TO RETURN TO MAINE , was killed May 6 by the Legislature's Criminal Justice Committee, political activist Ron Huber, who had pushed it, declared "victory in Augusta" on his Facebook page.
Inmate Exile Dept.
| May 13, 2011
At a turning point
When Joseph Ponte was told that Maine's longtime corrections commissioner Martin Magnusson had once informed the Legislature's Criminal Justice Committee, after a dramatic hostage-taking, that there were "probably 300 inmates right now with a weapon in
LePage's nominee to head Corrections has the skills to fix Maine's broken prison system. Will the governor and lawmakers give Joseph Ponte the tools?
| February 11, 2011
'No-touch torture' in New Jersey
Deane Brown, a Maine inmate shipped out of state because of his criticism of the Maine State Prison, is now being held in New Jersey in "one of the most repressive" prison units in the country, often reserved for "political" or activist prisoners like
Maine Whistleblower Watch
| January 28, 2011
Supermax coverage continues
Portland Phoenix contributing writer Lance Tapley has an article in the latest issue of the Boston Review. It's called "The Worst of the Worst: Supermax...
| December 17, 2010
TB worry at Maine State Prison
"Several individuals" at the Maine State Prison in Warren have tested positive for tuberculosis, but "there are no confirmed active cases," says Denise Lord, deputy Maine Corrections commissioner.
'No active cases'
| November 12, 2010
The few things that Republican Governor-elect Paul LePage was reported as saying on crime-and-punishment issues during the campaign mostly sounded harsh and, of course, right-wing.
Will LePage's zeal to cut the budget make prisoners and guards bleed?
| November 12, 2010
The 12-Bar Blues Project releases three prisoner-produced CDs
Jim Svendsen runs Guitar Doors, a non-profit group that's going into Maine prisons to teach inmates to play music and, along the way, putting bands together.
Breaking up the band
| November 05, 2010
AG exonerates guards
Critics of the state's prison system will press for an independent investigation after expressing dismay with the attorney general's long-delayed conclusion October 28 that Maine State Prison inmate Victor Valdez died last November from "a natural death.
Valdez prison death
| November 05, 2010
Prisoner-rights advocates honored by MCLU
Three Mainers, all activists for prisoner-rights, will be honored by the Maine Civil Liberties Union on Friday, with the MCLU's Roger Baldwin Award, named for...
| October 13, 2010
State should protect inmates’ rights
As Lance Tapley points out, denying prisoners access to human-rights protections is a mistake (see "Less Than Equal," October 2).
Letters to the Portland Editor, October 16, 2009
PORTLAND PHOENIX LETTERS
| October 16, 2009
Putting an end to the hunger strike
Maine State Prison officials ended a hunger strike involving at least 10 inmates of the solitary-confinement Supermax unit in Warren by threatening to withhold the strikers’ psychotropic medications, according to allegations by an inmate who participated
LANCE TAPLEY and JEFF INGLIS
| May 15, 2009
Maine Supermax inmates on hunger strike
_By Lance TapleyAt least eight inmates of the Maine State Prison’s solitary-confinement Supermax un...
| May 06, 2009
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