chklt_prison_100: Prisons

The population in American prisons and jails has tripled in the past 15 years with the predictable consequence that facilities are overcrowded; medical systems are overwhelmed; work, education, and treatment programs are inadequate; and idleness and stress lead to greater levels of violence. We have fought and continue to fight these conditions through successful litigation on behalf of prisoners.

Legal Cases

  • C-Pod Inmates of Middlesex County v. Middlesex County
    This lawsuit challenged solitary confinement practices at the Middlesex County Jail in “C-Pod”, a unit specifically for solitary confinement.
  • P.D. v. Middlesex County
    The ACLU-NJ represents P.D., a pretrial detainee with mental illness who, after being unable to make bail, was held in solitary confinement for more than four months.
  • Colon v. Passaic County
    Ongoing monitoring of settlement agreement with Passaic County requiring remedies for unsafe conditions at the Passaic County Jail.
  • Adam X v. New Jersey Department of Corrections and Department of Education
    Challenge to DOC for failing to provide appropriate education to students with special education needs in violation of IDEA.
  • State v. Mosley
    Amicus brief in challenge to the probation revocation process in New Jersey.
  • State v. Dickerson
    Amicus brief challenge to the proper scope of pretrial detention discovery.
  • Securus v. Christie
    Amicus brief in support of a motion to dismiss a challenge brought by one phone vendor, Securus, to a state law that caps phone rates in correctional facilities and prohibits facility commissions from vendors.
  • Holland et al. v. Rosen et al.
    Amicus brief, joined by the National ACLU and other civil rights group, in challenge to a federal lawsuit challenging bail reform.
  • Bornstein v. County of Monmouth
    County jail requests to seal court record of video footage of the last hours of an inmate’s life.
  • State v. Steele
    New Jersey’s current system of pre-trial detention and release unfairly penalizes poor defendants

Legislative Efforts

  • Marijuana Legalization
    Legalizes possession and personal use of small amounts of Marijuana for persons age 21 and over.
  • Medical Parole Expansion
    Expands eligibility of medical parole to prisoners determined to be permanently incapable for performing basic daily functions of life and in need of 24-hour medical attention; creates presumption of release; requires medical parolees be provided assistance in applying for Medicaid upon release; requires Parole board to collect data on medical parole grants and denials.
  • Comprehensive Juvenile Justice Reform
    Raises the minimum age for waivers from 14 to 15; eliminates some less serious crimes from the list of offenses subject to waiver; creates presumption that waived juveniles remain housed with juveniles until age 21; provides right to counsel and enhances due process protections before juveniles can be transferred from juvenile detention centers to adult prisons; eliminates use of solitary confinement except to protect health, safety, or the operation of a facility; mandates data collection and public reporting regarding the use of waiver and solitary confinement.
  • Ending Prison-Based Gerrymandering
    Requires that the incarcerated persons be counted at their last known address before prison for political redistricting purposes, not the location where they are confined.

Stay Informed

Join the Action Alert e-mail list to stay informed about current issues and campaigns, upcoming events, and how you can get more involved in the fight to protect and expand civil liberties.

ACLU of New Jersey is part of a
network of affiliates

Learn more about ACLU National