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Corrections department reverses package policy that banned books, food

Jan 13, 2018 12:20 am
Vivian Wang reports in The New York Times that the New York State corrections department suspended a new program that banned inmates from receiving most book titles, fresh fruit, and all sorts of other packages on Jan. 12, just after stories about the new policy enraged families and criminal justice reform advocates. “Concerns have been raised by families of inmates regarding the availability and price of products under this program, concerns we do not take lightly,” Thomas Mailey, a department spokesman, said in a statement. The program was launched first at three prison, including the the Greene Correctional Facility in Coxsackie. The story says Gov. Andrew Cuomo ordered the department to end the program. “The purpose of these new rules is to force families of prisoners to buy overpriced, shoddy crap from a few politically connected vendors,” artist and writer Molly Crabapple wrote on Twitter earlier in the week. “For now, we will cautiously celebrate, but be ever vigilant and watchful as to what else might come,” Soffiyah Elijah, executive director of Alliance of Families for Justice, said. Read the full story in The New York Times.