Why America still fails to reform its horrible prisons

It's fairly easy to get judges to find unconstitutional conditions inside our prisons. The hard part is getting government to do anything about it.

Prison reform
(Image credit: (REUTERS/Robert Galbraith))

It has been nearly two years since officials in Hinds County, Mississippi, made a deal with prison reform advocates to fix the abusive and neglectful conditions at the Henley-Young Juvenile Center. The deal that the parties signed, and that a Republican-nominated federal trial judge approved, required local officials to act decisively to end the "unnecessary use of force, excessive cell confinement, and denial of rehabilitative treatment and services" that had deprived the inmates at this juvenile detention center of their constitutional rights to be free from cruel and unusual punishment.

Victory, right?

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