Cincinnati, Ohio – Judges and other lawyers throughout Ohio will be able to see and feel what it's like to be a youth placed in solitary confinement this week. A special exhibit during the Ohio State Bar Association’s annual All Ohio-Legal Forum at the Duke Energy Center in Cincinnati will show what a solitary confinement cell actually looks like. Indeed, it will more than show it – the exhibit is an 8 x 8 replica of a cell used for the isolation of youths who are incarcerated. It includes dozens of initials that youths scrawled inside to show their weeks and months – and in some cases, years -- in isolation.
The Children’s Law Center is sponsoring “The Box” to bring attention to an ongoing problem. “Ohio has no law barring the use of solitary confinement for adults or children,” said Kim Tandy, the Center’s Executive Director, who has litigated against facilities which use this as means to control behavior. “Fortunately, the state of Ohio no longer uses isolation to punish youth in its state youth correctional facilities, although years of litigation bear witness to how much harm was done until we got to that point.” However, kids are still secluded in detention facilities and other out-of-home court ordered treatment centers. "The Box" was designed by Santa Barbara photographer Richard Ross, and replicates the inside of a cell block where one might be housed in isolation. Tandy said it is a stark reminder much work remains to be done in local juvenile detention facilities and jails to keep youth from languishing in what some describe as tortuous conditions.
The exhibit will be on display at the Duke Energy Convention Center on Thursday, April 28 from 7:00 – 7:00, and on Friday from 7:00 – 2:00. For more information contact Kim Tandy at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 859-431-3313. For photos of the exhibit by Richard Ross, go to http://www.juvenile-in-justice.com/solitary