By 发表: Oct. 24, 2023

Three-quarters of Colorado 监狱 are likely to experience a natural disaster in the coming years, 但是由于老化的基础设施和过时的政策, 许多地方设施简陋,无法保证居民的安全, bc体育下载的一项新研究表明.

这项研究发表在杂志上 自然灾害审查美国刚刚经历了有记录以来最热的夏季之一.S. 议员们 要求进行调查 into a rash of what are believed to be heat-related deaths in the nation’s 监狱.

在其他研究中, including interviews and focus groups with 35 formerly incarcerated Coloradans, the researchers found that most had already suffered from climate-related hazards, experiencing everything from “brutally hot” or “ice cold” cells to respiratory problems related to wildfire smoke and lack of toilet facilities during floods.

“We showed that the incarceration infrastructure in Colorado is highly vulnerable to climate- related hazards and that incarcerated people who are Black and Hispanic are at even greater risk,什德·达什提说, 大学副教授 土木,环境和建筑工程 也是两项研究的合著者. “This is a serious racial justice and environmental justice issue that needs to be addressed.” 

囚犯是最脆弱的群体

研究人员早就知道,被边缘化的社区, 包括有色人种, 低收入家庭和残疾人, 更容易受到气候变化的影响. But those behind bars face added risk, as they can’t leave or adapt their space to escape threats. 

设施往往是旧的, 隔热性能差,散热过时, 通风及空调系统. 科罗拉多州最古老的监狱于1871年开放. 大约40%的被监禁者有精神健康诊断, and many take medication that impairs their ability to regulate body temperature.

“再加上极端的温度, 气候变化带来的野火、烟雾和洪水, these conditions and lack of agency render incarcerated people extremely vulnerable,合著者本·巴伦说, 她是bc体育下载的博士候选人和研究助理 地理系

Shideh Dashti

 

This is a serious racial justice and environmental justice issue that needs to be addressed.”
-Shideh Dashti

直到最近,这方面的研究还很少.

为了解决这一差距 跨学科研究团队 收集了科罗拉多州110个设施的人口普查数据, 包括监狱, 监狱、少年拘留所和移民拘留所. They used GIS mapping software and climate modeling data to calculate whether each facility was at low, 中度或高度野火风险, 热浪, 洪水和山体滑坡.

他们发现74.5% of facilities housing 83% of Colorado’s incarcerated population have either moderate or high exposure to at least one hazard, 17%的人有两种风险.

One third of facilities, housing about 12,700 people, are at medium to high risk of wildfire.

Fifteen are at risk of flooding while, notably, 26 had no FEMA flood risk data available at all. 

大约一半的设施面临极端高温的风险. 

The study also found that incarceration facilities are more than twice as vulnerable to flooding than Colorado schools are. 相关的, 作者说, 因为不像囚犯, 遇有水浸危险,学生可自由离开.

Black people are significantly more likely than whites to be jailed in a facility at risk of extreme heat, while Hispanic or Latino people are at greater risk of experiencing a flood while incarcerated, 研究发现.

“bc体育下载在这里快死了!”

Dashti said the team had trouble getting information from many facilities about their engineering or architectural elements, but interviews with the formerly incarcerated painted a disturbing picture.

“听起来真的很可怕,巴伦说, who conducted nine interviews and four focus groups for a separate paper that has not yet been published. 

Some interviewees recalled temperatures soaring into the upper-90s inside their cells. 

“We just want the doors open because we’re dying in here,’” one told researchers.

当空调打开的时候, 它经常开到较冷的月份, 它非常寒冷,以至于牢房窗户里形成了冰.

Other formerly incarcerated people described being awakened in the night by wildfire smoke and stuffing clothing over vents and windows to keep ash out of their cell. Some had to wait outside in long lines in triple-digit temperatures to get their medications.

“I remember people just burning,” recalled one 46-year-old man, describing his cell mate. “他一整天都在外面. 他是如此的紫, and he had edema on his head so bad you could put your thumb in his forehead, 它会一直存在.”

“残酷和不寻常的惩罚”

由于缺乏应急计划, prisoners in other states have been infamously left behind when natural disasters hit.

In 2005, 在卡特里娜飓风期间, 数千人被关在奥尔良教区监狱数天, 淹没在深处, 污水污染的水,没有电. In 2020, during wildfires in California, a wildfire came within a few miles of two state 监狱. 当邻居被疏散时,囚犯被留在原地.

科罗拉多州的监狱至少两次被疏散:2013年, a fire forced evacuation of 900 people from Territorial Correctional Facility in Cañon City. In Barron’s interviews, a person evacuated that day described it as “chaos.2023年5月, hundreds at the Delta Correctional Center were evacuated due to the threat of flooding.

达什提说, 作为一名工程师, she has been horrified to learn of what she equates to “cruel and unusual punishment” in U.S. 监狱. She hopes the findings will encourage governments to update building codes and policies to ensure that facilities are more resilient and humane in the face of more frequent and severe natural hazards expected as a result of climate change. 

“但bc体育下载不能简单地设计出解决问题的方法,”她说. 

The U.S. 是世界上监禁率最高的国家吗, 每100人中就有700人被监禁,000人, 100分中的115分,为它的同类国家提供了1万美元. 仅在科罗拉多州,目前就有大约3.1万人在狱中. 

Dashti, Barron and their 跨学科研究团队 believe more support should also be provided for education, 精神卫生保健, public housing and other means to keep people from committing crimes or help rehabilitate them when they do. 

他们认为,一些监狱应该关闭.

“It’s not enough to say we’ll just retrofit and add air conditioning,巴伦说. “bc体育下载需要停止把这么多人关进监狱.”

Other co-authors on the 自然灾害审查 paper include: Postdoctoral Associate Sara Glade, 环境设计专业的学生Caleb Schmitz说, 环境设计副教授Shawhin Roudbari, 工程学教授阿比·里尔和谢利·米勒, 还有菲德拉·佩祖罗, 传媒系副教授.