I am writing this letter in support of the most unpopular and politically irrelevant group of people in our society, the prison inmate. One of whom is my brother. Most of whom are not violent criminals but people with addiction/mental health issues. The news came recently that IDOC would be sending up to 250 of our Idaho inmates to Texas due to overcrowding. They will be held at a GEO Group operated prison, which in 2009 was found to be “squalid and poorly operated.” That fact only came to light after an Idaho inmate’s suicide. I understand the prison has limited options when it comes to overcrowding but it is very important to a prisoner’s rehabilitation that they have personal contact with their family. This move makes visitation nearly impossible for most families and has a very negative impact on the children of these inmates. These children have no doubt been negatively impacted by their parent’s mistakes but will now suffer further loss due to the inability for most to travel out of state for visits. These children don’t deserve to be hurt that way and prisoners with minor children should be the last group to be moved.
Heather Padilla Bifulco, Meridian