Proposal for new jail oversight agency headed to WA lawmakers
Washington should establish an independent agency to craft and enforce standards for the operation of local jails under a proposal a statewide task force is sending to lawmakers. This new entity would set minimum staffing levels and maximum capacity for each city, county and regional jail, and write guidelines for intake, visitation, discipline, and medical […]
Indigenous people in WA incarcerated at higher rates than any other group, data show
Washington in recent years imprisoned Indigenous people at more than six times the rate of white people. That’s according to U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics data that the Prison Policy Initiative assembled and released last month. The 2021 figures posted by the advocacy group are the most recent information available. Native peoples make up about […]
Washington faces steep path closing mental health bed gap for jailed defendants
Defendants with psychiatric conditions often sit in Washington’s jails for weeks and sometimes months, waiting for mental health services before they can stand trial. That’s despite a 2015 federal court order, stemming from a lawsuit known as the Trueblood case, that found the state’s wait times unconstitutional. Washington’s been in contempt of the court order […]
Does Washington need a new agency to oversee jails?
Washington would create a new independent agency to set safeguards and conduct inspections of city, county and regional jails, under a proposal a statewide task force is backing. The agency would develop minimum standards for safety and a gamut of responsibilities such as intake, visitation, discipline, and medical care. It would be able to pursue […]