Editorial: Legislators fail N.C.'s prisons and local jails
Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018 -- There's no virtue in nickel-and-diming our prisons and jails. Those who work in them have important and dangerous jobs. They deserve better resources and compensation that protects their safety and keeps prisons secure. Our jails must be places were those awaiting justice don't die before getting their day in court.Posted — Updated
Sitting in a county jail waiting court action shouldn’t be a death sentence.
The causes of death vary – often suicides, drug overdoses or other medical-related circumstances – but the failure of county jail personnel to meet required, regular checks of inmates seems to be a common thread.
In contrast to local jails, those who work to keep our state’s prisons safe and secure should be able to do it without getting killed.
In the wake, there have been studies and recommendations. The legislature provided minor pay increases but didn’t impose a comprehensive plan or a major appropriation to address the problem in prisons and jails – it failed to provide much-needed staffing, training, equipment and facility needs. Given the needs of our prison system and jails, the $15 million appropriated for security upgrades is a token gesture
There’s no virtue in nickel-and-diming our prisons and jails. The people who work in them have important and too often dangerous jobs. They deserve far better resources and compensation that both protects their safety but keeps our prisons secure.
Similarly, our jails must be places were those awaiting justice don’t die before they get their day in court.
Assuring the safety and security of citizens is the most basic function of government. The current problems are prime examples of legislators’ failure while they focus on budget cuts and power grabs.
In this campaign season voters have the opportunity, from the voting booth, to remind them to get back to basics.
See you at the polls.