Oprah Winfrey believes the use of solitary confinement deserves scrutiny, which is why she pitched a story about the topic for this week’s 60 Minutes broadcast.
As a Special Contributor, Winfrey details how she ended up in a prison cell at the most notorious state penitentiary in America: Pelican Bay State Prison in California.
The story is Winfrey’s second report for 60 Minutes, and as cbs.com reports, this time, Oprah tells 60 Minutes Overtime senior producer Ann Silvio she doesn’t have a “bleeding heart” about the plight of prisoners but she wants to call attention to the use of solitary confinement because of its impact on the mental health of prisoners.
“If you say, ‘Lock ’em up and throw away the key,’–yeah, you can throw away the key, but the key’s gonna always get found,” says Winfrey. “Thirty years later, 15 years later, five years later, the key gets found and they’re comin’ out.”
Pelican Bay is known for its use of solitary confinement, and Oprah spoke to inmates who had served decades in “the SHU,” which is solitary confinement by another name.
In the video, watch Oprah’s full 60 Minutes Overtime interview with producer Rome Hartman about her 60 Minutes report “Pelican Bay.”
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