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Why crowd rallied at this Richmond park: 'We're not free until all of us are free'

Posted at 8:02 PM, Jan 14, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-15 13:19:16-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- A crowd gathered at Richmond's Monroe Park Saturday to rally for improved treatment of prisoners in Virginia.

The sixth annual Virginia Prison Justice Rally continued to focus on improving conditions for Virginians behind bars by focusing on these issues issues: bringing back parole and earned sentence credit in Virginia, more outside oversight in prisons and jails, a "second look" law for resentencing as well as ending solitary confinement.

FULL INTERVIEW: Natasha White on Virginia Prison Justice Rally

FULL INTERVIEW: Natasha White on Virginia Prison Justice Rally

Natasha White, the director of community engagement at Interfaith Action For Human Rights, spoke at the rally about why she believes solitary confinement should be limited.

"We have introduced SB 87, which would limit the use of solitary confinement to 15 days maximum, which coincides with the Nelson Mandela law, existing now from the UN that states that anything more than 15 days is torture," White said. "People are committing suicides. There is no limit to the amount of days somebody can be confined in a cell the size of a parking spot. It is mentally damaging to all involved."

The Virginia Prison Justice Network was created in 2018 to support and advocate for those in Virginia's prisons and jails.

This is a developing story, so anyone with more information can email newstips@wtvr.com to send a tip.

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