Maine voters take notice. A contributing part of the drug epidemic has plagued even the Maine state prison facility. this November, our out-of-tune legislators need to take heed.

As a 54-year-old serving 10 months in Warren, Maine’s maximum-security complex, I have asked myself why reckless penal staff have not allowed me to enter a re-entry work release program, especially when my crime was a direct result of hopeless socioeconomic issues. We are simply warehousing inmates, resulting in more costly reoffending.

There used to be programs once upon a time. Now, the Bangor pre-release center has collapsed. Recently, the Hallowell pre-release center and the DownEast Correctional Facility closed. Currently over half of all inmates at Maine State Prison are serving under four years. There is a troubling 80 percent recidivism rate — an issue not one politician feels the urge to address.

When casting a November ballot, let’s consider what lawmaker will hold this correctional agency accountable towards this callous penal warehousing dilemma.

Michael S. Ireland

Maine State Prison

Warren


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