Tag Archives: prison industries

WA: Prison inmates learning aerospace work

From the article: “About a dozen inmates are enrolled in a program that will make them certified aerospace composite technicians. Their goal is a post-prison chance to land jobs at companies like Boeing and its suppliers.”

Prison industries – one of the best defenses against recidivism and an opportunity for an inmate to learn skills that will help him find employment post-release.  Some people equate prison industries to slave labor, but it could not be further from the truth (at least not in Ohio – I can’t speak for other states) and it remains a valuable component of true rehabilitation.  We don’t have aerospace education in our prisons, but it sounds like a neat opportunity.

Read more of the article here.

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Demanufacturing Wal-Mart: Profiting From Prison Labor

Despite the article’s negative spin on it, the fact that Wal-Mart utilizes inmate labor is actually one of the first good things I’ve heard about Wal-Mart. Unfortunately, it looks like it isn’t actually Wal-Mart that is utilizing inmate labor, but the salvaging company with which Wal-Mart contracts.

As a tangential rant, it really annoys me when people bash inmate labor – it is useful employment and it generally pays inmates more than the paltry sum they would make working as porters on the unit.  Prison industries are generally highly sought-after jobs by the inmate population and the companies would not utilize inmate labor if they had to pay prevailing wages – why go to the trouble?  So it is a benefit to both the inmate population and the company.  I find it no coincidence that the people who bash inmate labor generally have not worked in or around prisons, don’t know what they’re talking about, and have their own agendas to push that have nothing to do with helping inmates.

Read the article here.

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Inmates at “Old Max” build choppers with con flair, but no hype

This is a great article regarding inmates building choppers in the Colorado prison system.

I am also a huge fan of Big House Choppers, a similar industry, in Nevada.  Their motto?  “We have the time to do it right.”  Love it.

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Inmate labor flaws exposed

From the article: “State correction officials declared last month they found no “purposeful misconduct” when concluding their investigation of a prison work-release program that came under scrutiny when inmates were found working on a lawmaker’s family farm.But interviews and documents obtained by The News Journal cast doubts on the credibility of the state investigation into the Department of Correction’s Sussex County day-labor program.”

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Prison labor costing Alabama, Mississippi jobs?

This article, regarding the closure of garment factories due to the US military changing its vendor to federal prison labor, raises again the hot topic of prison labor.  The reality is that if inmates can do the job cheaper, it is a benefit to taxpayers and it is a benefit to the inmates who want to do the work.  Many groups claim that inmate labor is akin to indentured servitude, but people who actually work in and around corrections know that that is not the truth.  In today’s overcrowded prisons, inmates have two options: (1) sit on their bunks and wait out their sentence or (2) engage in meaningful programs, of which prison industries is one.  Ultimately it benefits society to train inmates in work skills and it reduces the high cost of corrections if they can make a profit while they’re doing it.

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Serving thyme: Prison restaurant ‘The Clink’ opens to the public inside category-B jail

This program teaches inmates work skills and the pictures from the restaurant actually look amazing, but I am curious about two things: (1) how do they control the flow of contraband? and (2) how do they make a profit when visitors have to go through the extra time/effort of going through security, which has to be a detractor?

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NH police investigate breach of prison computers

From the article: “New Hampshire state police are investigating how convicts at the state prison in Concord hacked into a sensitive Department of Corrections system and whether internal files had been corrupted.

The security breach was discovered last week by a corrections staff member working in the prison industries shops, corrections spokesman Jeffrey Lyons said. About two dozen inmates have access to a cluster of computers on a closed network.”

I am very much a proponent of inmate education, particularly computer education that they may not have received prior to incarceration and that is a necessary part of today’s workforce…at the same time, who didn’t see this coming?

Read the article here.

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Investigation into inmate labor program finds lax practices

“A nearly two-month investigation by the Delaware Department of Correction into an inmate day-labor program in Sussex County has found that the near lack of documentation involving offenders who went out for single-day work results from decades of lax practices and procedures that were carried forward unchanged — not because of “purposeful misconduct” by department employees.”

Read more: http://www.delawareonline.com/article/20120813/NEWS02/120813009/Investigation-into-inmate-labor-program-finds-lax-practices?odyssey=nav|head&nclick_check=1

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Prison call centre plans revealed

“The Ministry of Justice is planning to set up call centres inside jails as part of its work programme for prisoners, according to documents promoting the scheme.

Details of the plans have emerged after marketing material from an MoJ- supported company, which described the call centre scheme as a “rehabilitation revolution”, were passed to the Guardian.”

Read more: http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2012/aug/09/prison-call-centre-plans-revealed?newsfeed=true

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