Monthly Archives: December 2011
Shared Anonymously I’ve always questioned why there’s never enough money for libraries, but always enough for prisons. We are presently building a set of new buildings which will replace the old Graterford. We become what we invest in. If we invest in problems they grow, if we invest in solutions instead the solutions grow and the problems shrink. It cost 35 to 40,000 dollars a year to place someone in Philadelphia prisons. Couldn’t this money be better spent investing in the same people? Prisons take over 25 percent of city budgets. Incarceration creates a big hole in a family and community. Children self esteem is destroyed when their fathers are removed from their lives and placed in prison. Not only is the father or son removed from the family, he also fails to be a contributor, both personally and financially. My suggestion is this: the city should purchase entire city blocks of run down homes. (This could be in Kensington, North Philadelphia, or Southwest Philadelphia). They are only going to return to the same neighborhood upon release. Rebuild the homes and turn them into half way houses for nonviolent offenders. This would cost approximately 1/10 or less than an incarceration. These individuals would then be mandated to attend a programs to address their drug and alcohol, G&D, Vocational Training, or psychological issues utilizing community resources. This would likely cost 3500 to 4000 dollars a year. Inmates could also be placed on work release as migrant workers, street cleaners, or employed to rebuild the neighborhood that they help tear down. Under the supervision of security and trained builders. The money these men earn can be put toward housing expenses so that their incarceration doesnt cost the taxpayer. Also, their money can be used towards child support, so that they and their children are less dependent on the system.
Incarceration on families involves some heartache, shattered images of each other, and hopefully (if all parties work really hard) rehabilitation and new beginnings for reentry; building strong relations back up with family members and loved ones too.
I grew up dealing with a father that went in and out of prison most of my life, and now my little cousin is looking at a life sentence. Everyday is a constant reminder that my cousin is sitting in prison, and cannot be there for our family. He misses happy and sad occasions, and is able to see his son grow up. I’ve been to see my cousin and I will continue to go because people in jail need to be reminded that there are people on the outside still care and love them.
My father is in federal prison. It doesn’t affect me because my father was never in my life. But I’ve visited my uncle and my father. I visit people in prison because I know how it is to be in prison and have no one.
My son is incarcerated and we as a family love and miss him terribly. We long for his presence, he has 2 children that need him. We visit as a family as much as we can.
Knowing they are existing in hell means we are all existing in hell
I have a family member that is incarcerated and he is the father of my kids, and I too have been incarcerated. It was hard for me to put money on his books and to take his son up there to visit him.
Having an incarcerated family member makes me feel like I’m unsure of what might happen. I never feel safe. I don’t visit because I don’t want to see him in there. Too many raw emotions come out. I don’t want to upset him.
Having an incarcerated family member is difficult because we have to take care of him financially and it is hard bringing the kids and having to explain what jail is. It’s hard watching loved ones die and he cannot be here. I have to visit because I don’t want him to feel lost or alone. I want him to have hope.
I cry, pray, and think about him every single day and my heart breaks for his children. I wish every inmate could and would receive regular visits.
I have a brother that is in prison that has been there for 22 years to this day. We do miss him and need him out here to help strengthen our family. I have visited my brother, I feel good visiting my brother but do not feel good leaving him in the place.