Abstract. This article, starting from the analysis of the latest report «Before the virus» presented by the Antigone Association on prison conditions in Italy during 2020, aims to examine and carry out brief critical considerations with regard to the areas of the Italian penitentiary system which have been heavily forged by the Covid-19 outbreak. Indeed, Covid-19 pandemic played a really important key-role in contributing to increase latent malaise in prisons of our country and to sharpen its never-ending criticalities. The hope for the future is that the pandemic, from a tragedy that has bent a system like the prison, one already on its knees well before the health emergency, can become an opportunity to bring to light its problems, which have been for too long dormant and hidden.
SUMMARY: 1. Introduction. – 2. Suicides and critical occurrences in Italian jails. – 3. Covid-19 outbreak and prison Italian environment. – 4. Solitary confinement. – 5. Alternative penitentiary measures. – 6. Closing remarks.
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