Special report on solitary confinement and lack of human contact in Norwegian prisons

For several years, Norwegian public authorities have been criticised internationally for the use of solitary confinement in Norwegian prisons. As recently as in June 2018, the UN Committee against Torture expressed great concern about the extent of prolonged isolation, and that the conditions for use of solitary confinement were not sufficiently clear. In the same year, the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT) visited Norway and recommended in its report that inmates held in isolation should be offered structured activities and have meaningful human contact on a daily basis. The committee was particularly concerned about the isolation of inmates with mental health problems.

Since 2014, the Parliamentary Ombudsman has visited 19 high-security prisons in Norway. This special report is a compilation of our findings relating to solitary confinement. The purpose of the report is to draw the Storting’s attention to the risk of violation of the prohibition against torture and inhuman treatment that isolation in prison entails.

The spesial report is available here.