Monday, January 9, 2006

Another Sign That We May Be Sending Too Many People Into Prisons

From the Seattle Times comes word of a new idea to deal with prison overcrowding. This idea is from our friends in Idaho: Idaho senator suggests sleep shifts in prisons

State Senate President Pro Tem Robert Geddes suggests what is known as a "hot cot" plan. Under the plan, some prisoners would share a bed. One would sleep in it by day, another by night. (I will not stoop to the obvious prison-sex joke.)

The hot cot sleep shifts would be for volunteers only, with better prison job assignments as a possible incentive.
"I can't find any place in the nation that's doing this --— or in the world, for that matter --— but why not? The rest of the nation works in shifts," Geddes said Thursday.
At first blush it sounds like a good idea, but prison officials point out that beds aren't the only things in short supply. There are also needs for correctional and medical staff, the cost of feeding inmates, and the need for additional wastewater treatment capacity to take into consideration.

Other folks have asked what might be done to keep people out of prison in the first place.

1 comment:

Nancy Willing said...

I wrote a paper on this subject for UD Prof Valerie Hans' Psychology and the Law 400 level course at least 15 years ago.
Nothing changes much.
The overcrowding is related to the three strikes law and the response of the populace to our crack-addled monsters of the 80's.

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