The Landmark web site has the article Sheriff’s inmate work crews help out at Rutland’s Treasure Valley.
Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis has been providing inmate work crews to assist budget strapped cities and towns all over Worcester County.
I first came to know about this article from seeing it posted on Thomas Chamberland’s Facebook page.
This article and the Facebook discussion after it, just shows the depths to which this nation has sunk. That the normally progressive person, Thomas Chamberland, can defend this program is even more astounding than the program itself.
Here is my initial comment that started a thread of discussion on Facebook.
But the savings in money is a measure of the work they do that the state does not pay for. The jobs they do for no pay would have to be done by free people for pay. It helps keep the unemployment figures high, which has some role in having more people in jail.
You can tell me about all the money the state pays to keep them housed and fed, but housing and feeding were the costs the plantation owners paid to keep their slaves alive and working. [I wouldn’t buy this justification from admitted slave owners, so it doesn’t cut it here.]
The fact that being out doing these projects is better than being locked inside is also a very weak excuse. The authorities that run the prisons should be required to pay the going wage rate to the convicts for the work that the convicts do. Many of these convicts have families that need to be supported. To say nothing of the unconvicted who could have used those jobs to support their families.
We call it unfair trade practices when other countries sell us goods that were made with prison labor. What suddenly makes it fair if we sell goods to ourselves that were made with prison labor?
The conversation on Facebook is ongoing. If you are interested in both sides of the argument, you will have to read it on Facebook. I don’t think you have to have a Facebook account to read it. I think this conversation is open to the public.