Two leftist Pennsylvania state senators are reintroducing legislation that would ban the use of solitary confinement for gay and transgender prisoners but allow its limited use on others.
Senators John Kane (D-Chester) and Katie Muth (D-Royersford) sent colleagues a memorandum describing their proposal and bemoaning the effects of isolation on prisoners’ mental health. Their bill would limit to 15 days a period of solitary confinement for any of Pennsylvania’s 37,000 state-facility inmates. LGBTQ individuals as well as pregnant women, minors and those 70 or older would be shielded from any isolated imprisonment.
Pennsylvania’s House of Representatives this week passed legislation empaneling a task force to study ways to position Philadelphia as a leading exporter of natural gas to markets around the globe.
The bill, sponsored by Rep. Martina White (R-Philadelphia), received the support of all Republicans in attendance but only 13 of the chamber’s Democrats. Among those Democrats were several representing areas above the Keystone State’s vast Marcellus Shale natural-gas deposit but also some legislators from the state’s southeast, including Reps. Tina Davis (D-Levittown), John Galloway (D-Fairless Hills), Ed Neilson (D-Philadelphia) and Kevin Boyle (D-Philadelphia).