Since 2007, NC-CURE has tirelessly advocated for the humane treatment of people in North Carolina prisons. NC-CURE has been instrumental in improving the conditions of confinement and providing hope and encouragement to those in prison and their loved ones. Here are some of our proudest accomplishments:
In 2011 Governor Beverly Purdue signed into law the Justice Reinvestment Act (JRA); the Act mandate was to reduce correctional costs and at the same time reduce recidivism. The JRA brought sweeping changes to current criminal justice laws. NC-CURE received a letter from Gov. Purdue requesting that we participate as stakeholders, and Elizabeth Forbes gave testimony to outline the changes NC needed to make to bring policy compliance with the prison system, prevent abuse and ensure humane treatment of the people NC incarcerates.
NC-CURE worked with the US Department of Justice, Correctional Section, to bring awareness of the systemic abuse of human life taking place behind prison walls to the mentally ill, disabled, and chronically ill. More than 3,500 ADA Title II complaint forms were mailed out to prisoners and their family members over a four-year period of time. In 2012, the US Department of Justice came to North Carolina and met with the NCDPS Secretary Jennie Lancaster demanding she complies with ADA federal regulations throughout the prison system when applicable to disabled prisoners. Six months later, NCDPS put in place the first-of-its-kind ADA policy that included inmate accommodation plans, mental health training for prison staff, and limited use of solitary confinement for disabled people.
NC-CURE has been instrumental in having several prisons inspected due to complaints of mold, overcrowding, insect infestation, lack of sanitation, and the spread of infectious disease.
NC-CURE has been instrumental in the promotion of improved NCDPS policy concerning limited use of confinement for those prisoners who suffer from mental health disorders. NC-CURE has been successful in promoting policies that include the monitoring of confinement cells to reduce suicides, clear concise suicide policies outlining guidelines facilities must adhere to, and providing prisoners the opportunity to return to general population when infraction-free.
In 2010, NC-CURE was instrumental in shining a light on the eight million dollars made in profits claimed by the NC Department of Corrections resulting from kickbacks paid by Global Tel-link. As a result, NC-CURE became part of the Equitable Telephone Campaign (ETC) supporting the need for reasonable debit card calling and email access for prisoners.