Inmate Advocates Urge Cuomo To Ditch Package Deal Guidelines For Prisons

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Household and pals of state prisoners launched a postcard marketing campaign protesting the Cuomo administration’s new package deal system requiring they use chosen on-line distributors.

The inmate advocates started sending postcards on Wednesday urging the Division of Corrections to cease its pilot program launched earlier this month.

They’re upset as a result of the distributors cost greater than native shops for easy objects like cookies and garments.

“Pricey Governor Cuomo, this vacation season is about giving, not taking away,” one of many postcards reads. “I object to the brand new DOCCS package deal guidelines.”

For many years, pals and family had been allowed to carry prisoners clothes, books and meals objects throughout visits or ship them by way of the mail. Officers search the packages earlier than giving them over to prisoners.

However jail officers say the brand new system — operational in three prisons — will cut back contraband being smuggled in.

Inmate advocates contend aged family members will battle with the net system, and so they level out it doesn’t enable them to ship recent fruit and greens.

Many are frightened the added costs will make prisoner packages unaffordable.

“I typically search discounted costs for meals, clothes, toiletries, sneakers, books, magazines and passion supplies for myself in addition to for my husband’s month-to-month packages which I ship once I go to,” mentioned the spouse of a prisoner in Greenhaven Correctional Facility who requested to stay nameless. “Many households stay on a restricted fastened revenue some could even obtain Meals Stamp Help.”

And solely one of many distributors for DOCCS’s package deal pilot carries tampons, charging $10.50 for a field of 40, practically double the value at Goal and different native shops.

State jail officers say there could also be an “adjustment” in costs based mostly on suggestions from households.

They’re additionally wanting so as to add three different distributors within the coming weeks. The system is anticipated to go statewide by fall 2018.

“The safe vendor program, utilized by virtually 30 jurisdictions within the nation, is a secure and safe methodology for households, pals or inmates to obtain packages of a variety of accredited objects, whereas considerably decreasing the introduction of contraband into DOCCS amenities making them safer for workers and inmates,” mentioned division spokesman Thomas Mailey.

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