06-04-2020  4:39 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4

NORTHWEST NEWS

Two De La Salle North Grads Forge Thrilling Paths

A med student and a Fulbright scholar reflect on their time at the school.

OHSU Resident Uses TikTok, Student Outreach, to Show Representation in Medicine

A group of high school students weighing careers in health care were recently greeted on Google Meet by a physician whose social media star is on the rise.

More Protests in Portland, Mayor Signs Police Reform Pledge

More than 10,000 people demonstrated peacefully in Portland in one of the largest U.S. protests Tuesday

Black Leaders Call For Change in Policing, Change in Media Coverage of Demonstrations

The Albina Ministerial Alliance of Portland’s Coalition for Justice and Police Reform has a long history of working on a deep policy level to effect change in local law enforcement practices, often in response to police killings

NEWS BRIEFS

Business Donates Profits

On Sunday, June 7, the owners of Pine State Biscuits are donating all of their profits to the NAACP and ACLU from all five of their...

NAMC-Oregon Statement on Racism, Inequity & Violence Against Black People

All of us at NAMC-Oregon are angered and deeply saddened by the police murder of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and the...

Civil Rights and Social Justice Organizations Call for a National Day of Mourning Today

At 12:45 p.m. PT today, the NAACP is asking for everyone to take a moment of silence for 8 minutes and 46 seconds. ...

ACLU Files Class Action Lawsuit Against Minneapolis Police for Attacking Journalists at Protests

The lawsuit’s lead plaintiff, Jared Goyette, a journalist covering the demonstrations, was shot in the face with a rubber bullet ...

Statement by AG Rosenblum on People of Color Caucus Recommendations

People of Color Caucus released policy recommendations yesterday pertaining to police accountability ...

COVID: Washington unemployment fraud might be 0 million

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Washington officials said Thursday they believe they have recovered about half of the hundreds of millions in unemployment benefits paid to criminals who used stolen identities to file claims during the coronavirus pandemic.Employment Security Department Commissioner...

Lawsuit aims to hold nebulous 'antifa' to blame for injuries

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A conservative writer from Portland, Oregon, filed a lawsuit Thursday against purported elements of the nebulous, far-left militant groups collectively known as antifa, days after President Donald Trump blamed those groups for inciting violence at protests over...

Kansas, Missouri renew Border War with 4-game football set

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Kansas and Missouri are resuming their bitter Border War in football after the former Big 12 rivals agreed to a four-game series in which each school will play two home games beginning in September 2025.The fourth-longest rivalry in college football dates to 1891, but...

OPINION

Responding to Challenging Questions in a Nation Still in Upheaval

Nate McCoy attempts to answer tough questions in a letter to his sons ...

Mayor Ted Wheeler: Portland and the Path Forward

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler invites Portlanders, as public servants, to join him "in insisting that we never return to business as usual." ...

Local Business Leaders Share Messages of Hope

President, CEO of SAIF says each of us must move forward in "our understanding of the problem, in holding ourselves accountable for our own attitudes and biases, and in coming together, not apart." ...

Time to Stop Messing Around and Strike at the Root of Police Violence

Thomas Knapp says the root of police violence is the creation of "police forces" as state institutions separate from the populace and dedicated to suppressing that populace on command ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

The Latest: Wisconsin's World Dairy Expo canceled amid virus

MADISON, Wis. — Organizers of the World Dairy Expo in Madison have canceled this year’s event because of the coronavirus pandemic.It’s the first time the annual trade show has been canceled in its 53-year history.Event organizers said they made the decision Thursday because of...

Black activists, allies call Lee statue removal a big win

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Wes Bellamy, a former Charlottesville city councilman, said that when he first started raising the issue of removing Confederate monuments, black and white people alike across Virginia told him he was just causing trouble.Several years — and death threats —...

Dallas officials remove Texas Ranger statue from Love Field

DALLAS (AP) — A published account of brutal and racist chapters in the history of an elite Texas investigative agency prompted Dallas officials to remove on Thursday a statue from Love Field’s passenger terminal that honored the agency.The 12-foot-tall bronze statue of a Texas Ranger,...

ENTERTAINMENT

Lin Miranda doc postponed out of solidarity with protesters

NEW YORK (AP) — Just two days before it was to begin streaming, “We Are Freestyle Love Supreme," a documentary about the hip-hop improv group with Lin-Manuel Miranda and friends, has postponed its release out of solidarity with protesters. The group announced the postponement...

Senate confirms Trump's pick to lead Voice of America

WASHINGTON (AP) — A divided Senate voted along party lines Thursday to confirm President Donald Trump’s choice to head the Voice of America and other U.S. government-funded international broadcasters that have been the subject of harsh criticism from the White House. Despite...

Headlines, op-ed prompt staff protests at NY Times, Inquirer

NEW YORK (AP) — Some staffers at The New York Times and Philadelphia Inquirer called in sick Thursday to protest decisions at each newspaper they believe were insensitive in the midst of nationwide protests about police mistreatment of black Americans.At the Times, an opinion column by U.S....

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Pandemic and racial unrest test black clergy on dual fronts

For black clergy across the United States, the past 10 days have been a tumultuous test of their stamina and their...

UK vaccine summit calls for freely available virus vaccine

LONDON (AP) — A vaccine summit hosted by Britain on Thursday raised billions of dollars to immunize...

Heat-trapping carbon dioxide in air hits new record high

KENSINGTON, Maryland (AP) — The world hit another new record high for heat-trapping carbon dioxide in the...

Prince Charles misses hugging his family amid virus lockdown

LONDON (AP) — Prince Charles says he has missed giving his family members a hug during the long weeks of...

Face coverings to be mandated on public transport in England

LONDON (AP) — Passengers on England’s buses, subways and trains will have to wear face coverings...

Germany's Merkel dismisses talk she might seek 5th term

BERLIN (AP) — German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Thursday firmly rejected suggestions that she might seek a...

McMenamins
Don Thompson the Associated Press

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) -- California prisons mark a milestone Friday, when officials announce they have removed the last of nearly 20,000 extra beds that had been jammed into gymnasiums and other common areas to house inmates who overflowed traditional prison cells.

Inmates in rows of double- and triple-stacked bunk beds became "the iconic symbol of California's prison overcrowding crisis," Corrections Secretary Matthew Cate said in announcing an end to what the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation formally calls "nontraditional beds."

Crowding was so bad that it was hours before guards discovered that an inmate had been killed in his bunk in a makeshift dormitory at the California Rehabilitation Center in Riverside County in 2005, former state corrections secretary Jeanne Woodford told federal judges in 2008.

The judges have since forced California to radically change the way it punishes criminals. The prison population has dropped by nearly 19,000 inmates since a new law took effect in October that is sending less serious offenders to county jails instead of state prisons.

California currently has nearly 142,000 inmates but must shed another 17,000 inmates to reach the June 2103 court deadline to reduce crowding in its 33 adult prisons. The federal courts ordered the state to reduce its inmate population as a way to improve inmate medical care, which was so inadequate that judges ruled it violated prisoners' constitutional rights.

The nontraditional beds once held more inmates than the entire prison populations of 25 other states, according to national statistics for 2010, the most recent available.

The U.S. Supreme Court published two photographs of tattooed, shirtless inmates milling around three-tier bunk beds as part of its ruling last year upholding the authority of lower courts to order California to reduce crowding.

Cramped conditions promote unrest and violence, the justices said. The court's ruling cited a medical expert who testified that forcing large numbers of inmates to share a few toilets made the congested areas "breeding grounds for disease." The crowding was unhealthy and dangerous not only for inmates, the court said, but for the guards, as well. The ratio in some overcrowded dormitories was often two or three guards for every 200 inmates.

The use of the nontraditional beds dates back a quarter-century but spiked when California prisons filled to bursting as get-tough sentencing laws took effect. At their peak in August 2007, the department had 72 gyms and 125 dayrooms jammed with 19,618 inmate beds.

"They provided an accurate and extremely graphic example of the crowding and inhumanity that engulfed the entire system," said Don Specter, director of the nonprofit Prison Law Office in Berkeley, which sued to force the state to ease crowding as a way to improve the treatment of sick and mentally ill inmates.

Cate, the corrections secretary, scheduled a news conference Friday to mark the occasion at Deuel Vocational Institution in Tracy, 70 miles south of the state capital.

The prison lost its original purpose a decade ago when it was pressed into use as a reception center for newly arriving prisoners. At one point, more than 1,000 inmates were shoehorned into makeshift areas at the prison, crowding that prison officials say helped spark a riot in 2003 that injured nine inmates and one employee.

The institution once offered 13 vocational education programs, including painting, welding, office machine repair, shoe repair and electronics, which disappeared.

Now that there is more space for classrooms, officials said the prison is expected to again offer classes in welding, plumbing, heating and air conditioning, and auto body repair.

© 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

image of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
Calendar

Photo Gallery

Photos and slide shows of local events

The Skanner Photo Archives