Incarcerated Elders

root - Posted on 15 April 2009

Incarcerated Elders working in prison 10 hours a day - 7 days a week

by Bruce Allison\Poverty Scholar

It all started about a year ago when I went into a senior conference, they interviewed seniors in jail. Most of these people at their age and time in life, 80s and 90s are still working while incarcerated. Not an eight-hour job, but a ten-hour job seven days a week. A statistic says their residity rate of them going back to jail is 1% to 0%. That means there is almost no chance of them returning to prison. Besides, most of them cannot do their full sentence and are there because of the three strikes law. There are some bills in the assembly that want to give them a reprieve from labor after the age of seventy, but there are opposing forces that do not want that to happen. These people are representing the prison industrial complex, so that they can make 2500 dollars a day from taxpayers. Instead, if they are put into a nursing facility or senior housing they will cost taxpayers 250 dollars a day and that is with social security if they never worked a day in their life. There is no way they can go back to their criminal occupation. Robbing a bank takes more than a walker or wheelchair can handle. This should be noted on the pardon board, or whoever gives them pardons. They are no threat to society anymore. Most seniors that I have met that have left jail have done remarkable things.

For example a former incarcerated person by the name of Bobby Bogan is director of a non-profit organization known as Seniors Organizing Seniors. In that position he is well known, articulate, and with that gift he has been able to facilitate a childhood dream. Presently he is planning to set up a senior national convention in the city of San Francisco for especially poor seniors will be that will be held in three years. Others have been through the same situation and are intelligent and will be assets to society. They will help the community with their knowledge and wisdom as elders.

If you are interested in getting elders out of incarceration write to your assemblyman or state senator if you are in California. For national elders in jail and national laws write to your federal senator or congressional representative. I also encourage you to write to the president about the three strikes law and seniors should not be in jail because it is a burden to society. This will not bring a huge crime wave to society this is bogus policy that is based on the old myth that once a criminal always a criminal.


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