House passes bill to limit the solitary confinement of juveniles in Washington state

OLYMPIA, Wash. — The Washington State House of Representatives passed a bill on Thursday that would ban facilities from using solitary confinement as a form of punishment for juveniles.

House Bill 2277, sponsored by Rep. Strom Peterson, passed the House of Representatives in a 76-20 vote, according to the Washington State Office of Attorney General Bob Ferguson.

The bill wouldn’t completely prohibit solitary confinement, but it would limit it to no more than four hours at a time and only for safety purposes in youth detention facilities.

“Solitary confinement has no place in juvenile facilities,” Rep. Peterson said. “It traumatizes youth and hurts their ability to learn and grow into adults who are effectively re-integrated into society. I’m proud to have helped pass this bill.”

The bill now moves to the Senate for consideration.