County commissioners in Anderson County, Tenn., last week proposed measures to charge inmates in the county jail for basic necessities, such as toilet paper and clothing. Critics say it’s unfair and unconstitutional. Proponents argue it’s a creative solution to two broad problems: prison populations that are growing too fast and budgets that aren’t growing fast enough.
GovBeat bloggers are watching the issue. And now you can, too. Post TV’s Nia-Malika Henderson had a conversation about the practice with two experts on Thursday’s episode of “On Background.” It’s a great introduction to the debate over having inmates pay for necessities. Check it out: