Friday, April 5, 2013

Living Paycheck 2 Paycheck? Broke? - Go Directly to Jail

A recent report from the ACLU – shows little hope for Americans.

As our economy continues to stagnate – and our paychecks refuse to keep up with the cost of living – we can end up in jail – for being poor.

Considering that ALEC legislators are trying to get rid of the minimum wage, get rid of paid sick time, get rid of decent paying union jobs, removing living wage policies - it is evident that they want Americans poor - ALEC legislators have no concern at all for the general public. NONE.

Is this blatant disregard for the American people going to stop – probably not - it will probably expand - because of pro-corporate ALEC legislators.

The American Legislative Exchange Council  – YOUR legislators developing “best legislation practices” for corporations.

The Ohio debtor prison practice will just go to an ALEC meeting – be turned into ALEC “model legislation” by ALEC private prison corporate members – so they can increase profits – by putting more people in their jails. 

The ACLU of Ohio today released The Outskirts of Hope, a report that chronicles a nearly yearlong investigation into Ohio’s debtors’ prisons and tells the stories of six Ohioans whose lives have been damaged by debtors’ prison practices.
The resurgence of contemporary debtors’ prisons sits squarely at this intersection of poverty and criminal justice. While this term conjures up images of Victorian England, the research and personal stories in this report illustrate that debtors’ prisons remain all too common in 21st century Ohio. In towns across the state, thousands of people face the looming specter of incarceration every day, simply because they are poor.

The stark reality is that, in 2013, Ohioans are being repeatedly jailed simply for being too poor to pay fines.

Debtors’ Prisons In Ohio
  Despite clear constitutional and legislative prohibitions, debtors’ prison practices are alive and well throughout Ohio.

An investigation by the ACLU of Ohio uncovered conclusive evidence of these practices in 7 of the 11 Ohio counties examined.
  Courts in Huron, Cuyahoga, and Erie counties are among the worst offenders. In the second half of 2012, over 20% of all bookings in the Huron County Jail were related to failure to pay fines. In Cuyahoga County, the Parma Municipal Court jailed at least 45 people for failure to pay fines and costs between July 15 and August 31, 2012. During the same period in Erie County, the Sandusky Municipal Court jailed at least 75 people for similar charges.

  Based on the ACLU of Ohio’s investigation, there is no evidence that any of these people were given hearings to determine whether or not they were financially able to pay their fines, as required by the law.
The Outskirts of Hope
Read it

And get ready.

You can stick your head in the sand and make believe that this won't come to your state - but ALEC is meeting in Oklahoma City next month and you can bet - the ALEC private prison corporate members have already written the "debtor prison model legislation"  becaustheycan.

Upcoming ALEC meetings
Oklahoma City
May 2-3, 2013

Chicago -
Celebrating 40 years of destroying democracy

Don’t know who/what ALEC is?
It is time you did!!!
For lots of info about the American Legislative Exchange Council
check out this webpage

ALEC Exposed

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