Is this a new day or what? Harris County’s Sheriff says, “We stay ahead of the curve…” and institutes a gay, lesbian, bisexual and trangender policy that is comprehensive and progressive. Sheriff Garcia of Houston is in charge of the third-largest county jail in the U.S., where 125,000 are booked annually. At least 2.8 percent identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. Harris County’s new policy concerning inmates prohibits discrimination or harassment of any kind based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Now, we hope this means that LGBT inmates will also get good medical care and decent treatment–a concern since we are still hearing of Houston inmates of all genders and identifications who don’t necessarily get that while incarcerated there.
Not saying that caring for 8, 900 human beings is an easy job. Just saying it’s an important job to do right.
- A GEO Group Rap Sheet: Death & Misery at For-Profit Prisons
- Sheriff and County Judge Oppress Panhandle Women
- Behind bars for lack of money
- Equality for LGBT Inmates at Harris County Jail
- Her son died in the Gregg County jail
- Attorney General orders Bosque County to release information
- Texas Criticized in UN Report on Shackling of Incarcerated Pregnant Women
- Innovative Rehab for Houston Prostitutes
- Harris County: Poor people get longer jail time
Who We Are and What We DoThe Texas Jail Project seeks to improve the conditions for approximately 65,000 people—mothers, fathers, brothers, sons, sisters, and daughters—who are incarcerated in Texas county jails. Our issue areas include:
This article looks at Geo Group and asks what they are delivering for the big bucks they are making? Turns out it’s a bad deal for prisoners, guards and for the rest of us too. GEO’s cost-cutting measures have resulted in “inadequate training, low pay, and high turnover of corrections staff as well as chronic understaffing. Further allegations of civil rights abuses and medical neglect have resulted in individual and class-action lawsuits brought against the company.”
Former Swisher County Sheriff Benavidez has been charged with official oppression–as a public servent, he intentionally subjected another person to mistreatment. Or in this case two people. Both his victims have had to file a lawsuit, because they were punished for reporting the assaults and lost benefiits and pay, after county judge Harold Keeter actually refused to press charges. Both women were humiiated and sexually assaulted; the good news is that the second woman had her cell phone camera on during the whole nasty incident!
Betty Madewell speaks fondly of her son, Bobby. 51-year-old Bobby Madewell, Jr died last March in the Gregg county jail. His family filed a lawsuit against the jail just a few weeks ago. The days are a little longer now for Betty Madewell of Longview, who says she is still mourning the loss of her son, Bobby.”It’s very hard, we miss him dearly. We miss him every day,” she says.
From a Brownsville guard in the women’s unit at the Cameron County Jail, Fall, 2013 “There have been so many good changes since what Gail and the Texas Jail Project did… the people at the jail now treat prisoners better….they are afraid to treat them like they use to. They used to put people in
The teenager opened her neighbor’s unlocked car, grabbed the iPhone off the armrest and ran home, a few doors away in her downtown neighborhood in New Orleans.
The international community is now reading about Texas in this new report on shackling in the U.S. Unfortunately. Some of the information is derived from research and observations by Texas Jail Project.
A medical officer at a Texas county jail wrote us about her job & what inmates need to know. This is exactly the kind of thing we need to hear this from those working inside jails, especially since more people have died in just the past few weeks–inmates in Gregg and Bexar and Ector counties.
“To My Inmates,
Yes, I call you “my” Inmates. Sometimes I even call you my kids. There are 600 of you and one of me, the Medical Sgt. I am a nurse. I care what happens to you. I care what your family is going through while you are here. When I interviewed for my job I was asked what would be the most difficult thing I felt I might have to go through. My answer…… losing one of you. A death in custody. You are my responsibility.”
If your loved one says the county jail won’t give her or him a grievance form, get one from Texas Law Help, and mail it to her or him! A guide and grievance forms for various Texas jails are on this Texas Law Help website. Without a grievance, inmates will find it almost impossible to sue a jail or county, no matter what happens to them in there.