I found this news story in my local media and was like WTF?!?!?
San Antonio, Texas - May 14, 2009 - Most people can simply run out to the store when they need a jar of peanut butter or a loaf of bread, but people behind bars are a captive audience for such necessities, literally.
Inmates at the Bexar County jail are allowed to buy simple things like ramen soup, soap and candy bars at the jail commissary, run by Aramark, but now some wonder if they're not being ripped off.
"The prices are just outrageous and ridiculous,” said one inmate. "I think they're outrageous,” said another. “They're terrible." Abel Gallardo agrees. "Here we go baby. Where are we going, HEB?" Gallardo said to his small child as he pushed the child in a toy car near the home they share on the southside.
Gallardo is trying to raise two kids while his wife is in jail. He said the jail commissary’s high prices make it hard on families to get by, because money has to be spent behind bars. "They need to treat these ladies and these guys right,” Gallardo said. “Yeah, they committed a crime, well they're sitting in jail paying for it."
In a a comparison shopping trip, the KSAT 12 Defenders found that a bar of Irish Spring soap is $1.29 in the commissary, but $.75 at a store. Candy bars are $1.09 in the commissary versus $.74 in the store. Chili is $3.59 in the commissary, $1.45 at the store. A tuna pouch is $2.99 in the commissary, $.89 in the store and the ramen soup is $.69 in the commissary, but only $.15 in the store.
"It's just straight highway robbery," said an inmate. But the jail said prices here are in line with convenience store prices, not grocery store prices, and that the county takes 35 percent of the profits from commissary profits and puts the money back into inmate services.
"We use them for our social workers, human services programs, religious programming, re-entry programming and education programming," said Bexar County Jail Chief Debra Jordan.
My two cents - What audacity they have to complain. They get chili, candy bars and ramen soup while being locked up for various offenses, some of them serious one has to presume.
|Liveleak on Facebook|