More on Ashker v. Governor
In 2015, the case reached settlement, ending indeterminate solitary confinement in California. Previously, California promised to transfer people from solitary to general population units. But it has placed many of the men in units called “general population” where the men get even less time out of their cell than they had in the SHU. In 2018, the District Court ruled that a transfer to 23-hours a day alone in a cell is not a transfer to “general population.” What’s more, California promised that prisoners held in a “Restricted Custody General Population Unit” or “RCGP” because of threats to their safety in general population would all be allowed to recreate in groups. Instead, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) has placed half of the RCGP prisoners on “walk-alone status” where they have no group activities at all. In 2018, the District Court ruled that this too violated the Ashker settlement agreement.
The CDCR has appealed both losses to the 9th Circuit, and Plaintiffs are defending the District Court’s orders. Samuel Miller, cooperating counsel with the Center for Constitutional Rights, will be arguing for Plaintiffs.