“The grate outdoors”

The Colorado Independent published an article today titled “The grate outdoors” on CREEC’s case Anderson v. Colorado Department of Corrections regarding the lack of outdoor exercise for those in solitary confinement.   It covers the hearing in the case on September 4, 2013, in which — among other things — Judge Brooke Jackson held that the exercise areas at Sterling Correction Facility do not provide outdoor exercise for purposes of the 8th Amendment.

Dark, small concrete enclosure demonstrating the lack of space and light in the exercise area at Sterling Correctional Facility.

Exercise Area at Sterling Correctional Facility

In the Final Order and Judgement, the judge previously held that the exercise areas at the Colorado State Penitentiary did not provide required outdoor exercise and ordered the DOC to ensure that

Troy Anderson has access for at least one hour, at least three times per week, to outdoor exercise in an area that is fully outside and that includes overhead access to the elements, e.g., to sunlight, rain, snow and wind.

A bare and narrow cinder-block room demonstrating small exercise space with minimal natural light.

Exercise Area at Colorado State Penitentiary

In response, rather than providing required outdoor exercise at CSP, the Department simply moved Mr. Anderson to Sterling.   The September 4 ruling indicates that that solution was inadequate.   Ultimately, the judge ordered the parties to talk and we are looking forward to working with the Department to ensure that Mr. Anderson gets both adequate outdoor exercise and adequate mental health treatment.

 

Relevant Links:

The grate outdoors

Anderson v. Colorado Department of Corrections and Decoteau v. Raemish