Javier Jiménez, the San Quentin News (SQN) staff photographer for the last 18 months, ended his eight-year prison journey on March 16 when he became a returning citizen.
“I never thought my criminality would end—and to get a new start while being at San Quentin, it’s unbelievable,” said the returning husband and father of a son.
Jiménez credits SQN with allowing him to “get back in touch with the passion (photography) I have loved for 23 years.”
Jiménez is an example of CDCR Secretary Ralph Diaz’s new mission statement:
“To facilitate the successful reintegration of the individuals in our care back to their communities equipped with the tools to be drug-free, healthy, and employable members of society by providing education, treatment, rehabilitative and restorative justice programs, all in a safe and humane environment.”
Before leaving, Jimenez talked with the San Quentin News. The self-taught photographer said, “I feel lucky and, just as important, [I] came through under pressure for the newspaper. I was in the right place at the right time. I knew [previous photographer] Eddie Herena was leaving and knew the editor-in-chief, Jesse Vasquez. I put my resumé in, and it, the resumé, only showed my ambition to better myself and the News team hired me.”
Jiminez reminisced about his favorite photo shoot. “My favorite photo shoot was my very first one—The Queens of the Stone Age. The Warden was there, I met Lieutenant Robinson, and someone said, “Here, turn on the camera.” Smiling, he said, “That’s a lot of pressure.”
The staff photographer shoots two to three hundred shots per event. Jimenez evaluated his own work, saying, “I was not good at first, but have gotten much better with more access to the camera.”
From the artistic side, Jimenez leaves words of wisdom for the next photographer(s). “You’ll get thrown in, so read about the basics and it better flow—either you have the passion to improve in any craft or occupation or you don’t. My improvement came from knowing I was working with a national newspaper that was paying me to learn—and I am getting better because I have that passion to improve.”
One of the mainstays in the SQN office, he stabilized the crew with a daily dose of humor and wisdom from “real talk.” Jiménez looked at every day he spent in the newsroom as “comical—like stand-up comedy,” and left a remembrance of each “family member” of the staff:
- Marcus “Wali” Henderson, editor-in chief, is a “laid back person who loves to write.”
- Juan Haines, senior editor, is the “smooth argumentative grandpa.”
- Kevin Sawyer, associate editor, is “meticulously organized and a great writer.”
- Joe Garcia, the Journalism Guild chairperson, he sarcastically called “the weirdest personal trainer I’ve ever met.”
- David Ditto, circulation manager, is “always looking at the positive aspects of EVERYTHING.”
- Charles Crowe, staff writer, has “an undercover sense of humor I love.”
- Heriberto Arredondo, staff writer, “will have big shoes to fill when Juan Espinosa leaves.”
- Anthony Caravalho, staff writer: “You took a lot of ‘stuff’ from us and you keep coming back—hope to do business with you on the outside.”
- Juan Espinosa, layout designer and leader of Wall City’s Spanish edition, he credits as “the most important representative of the 35-45% of incarcerated Hispanic people. “Juan is my genius brother that claims he is not a genius, but I know better.”
- Richard “Bonaru” Richardson, executive editor, is “my brother with like-minded aspirations who deserves to go home.”
Jimenez’s own aspirations are to live where he can afford to buy land, and to build a nice home for his family while keeping them safe. If he can own a photo studio or fall back on his construction talents upon his return to society, he will be satisfied going home to the family he loves.
Executive Editor Richard Richardson said the news group will depend on Jiménez’s support for photographs from outside stories the group is developing. Currently Jiménez hopes to follow his predecessor, Eddie Herena, who is working with Wall City, while he considers offers to be staff photographer for a local nonprofit called “Through The Bars.”
“To make a living out of my passion (photography) is the most enjoyable thing I was allowed to do in prison, and if I can carry it beyond the walls of San Quentin I would consider myself very fortunate,” said the SQ News photographer. “Hopefully I can continue capturing people’s attention with pictures—that is my goal.
“I remember at DVI eight years ago, I read all about the programs at San Quentin and hoped to get there.” For those aspiring to join the nation’s #1 news outlet on social reform, he added, “I think the paper allows you to hone skills while in prison, especially if you can write. I mean, where else can you be consistently published and be around people who carry weight in the justice system on a daily basis? It’s just unheard of,” said Jiménez.
Monday morning March 16 upon his release, you could have found “Javy” at the nearest taco truck before he went home to continue another passion he has not done for eight years—cooking enchiladas for his family.
A team of prisoners met with youth coaches from the San Francisco Bay Area in San Quentin’s Protestant Chapel on Feb. 28. They talked about young people’s understanding of masculinity and the role coaches play in their lives.
Coaching4Life aims to show coaches how to maximize the impact they have on young athletes.
“We believe that youth coaches are the most influential people in their lives,” said Coaching4Life facilitator Brandon Terrell. “You may think that it’s the job of the parents, but 20 million kids are growing up without a father. I’m one of them.” He added, “Sports are in the perfect position to show young boys how to serve others and be committed to a cause bigger than themselves.”
Terrell went on to say that 92% of high school dropouts didn’t play sports, while 95% of Fortune 500 executives played high school sports and gave credit to their sports experience for their successes in life.
Coaching4Life was a one-day workshop that discussed how the definition of “man” changed since childhood, the wide range of teachings that coaches impart on youth, how to teach masculinity and “The Man Box.” The workshop also focused on defining success.
“I loved growing up in The Man Box,” Ronald Carter said. “I got picked first.”
Carter talked about the respect he gained by putting on the “tough guy” persona and how being called the wrong name, like sissy or chump, was serious business.
“If you call me one of those names, I’d go off. I’d want to fight,” Carter said. “Those names take us out of the box.”
Carter went on to talk about how maturity shifted his perspective about masculinity. Today, he says, he’s on a mission to help younger athletes.
“Show me the man you honor, and I’ll show you the man you want to be,” Carter said.
The workshop participants formed small groups to discuss each topic.
Some participants defined success as “being able to ask for help without being ashamed or to say that I love my family.” Others, “setting goals and seeing them through,” “being a positive influence,” “being happy and in a healthy relationship,” and understanding that “coaches are teachers and kids are sponges,” as well as, “coaches are authority figures that young athletes look up to.”
Kevin Sample, one of the facilitators, talked about the time coaches spend with young athletes.
“Each day my mother got 10 minutes with me, that same day my coach got four hours,” Sample said. “So, having coaches that teach life skills is important.”
Sample talked about how young kids pay attention to athletes and model the behavior they see.
He then challenged the audience to connect with the children in order “to change the world,” adding, “Our biggest problem is that we hide our brokenness from children.”
What is success? he asked. “Remember that children just don’t know— help our kids, heal their brokenness.”
The Coaching4Life facilitators have 266 years combined incarceration experience—the youngest, Juan Navarro, 33 years old, has been incarcerated for nine years.
“Nothing like this is happening in any other prison,” said Dwight Kennedy. “The volunteers could be doing something different, but they choose to come and do this.”
Motivational speaker Bob Goff led an eclectic group of celebrities into San Quentin’s Protestant Chapel on Feb. 25 to bring a message of hope and inspiration through “Adventures in Faith and Love.”
Some at San Quentin know Goff from previous visits. Derry “Brotha D” Brown smiled broadly as he talked about the warmth of Goff’s greeting, “He embraces people; that’s what I like about him,” said Brown. “He’s inclusive, not exclusive. The other people [with him] were good, too.”
San Quentin’s Captain Escalera opened the program with a brief prayer. Gokey, third-place finisher on American Idol several seasons ago, followed with two inspirational songs, the second of which had everyone standing, clapping, and a few even dancing in the aisle.
The singer then delivered a brief inspirational message before handing the microphone to Duck Dynasty star Willie Robertson, who sported his trademark long hair, full beard, and American flag bandana. Robertson is a great storyteller and he shared amusing anecdotes about his experiences as a celebrity.
Robertson has met three presidents, including presidential candidate Donald J. Trump, whom he encountered at an Oklahoma State Fair. Robertson drew a laugh by talking about the crowd at the Oklahoma fair and noting, “That’s my people.”
The Duck Dynasty star also met President Obama at a national correspondents’ dinner, and when the President gave him a bear hug nearby Secret Service agents eyed him closely. He told them, “He’s hugging me. I’m not hugging him.” Robertson’s message was inspirational, but he also evoked a steady stream of laughter with his humorous, Southern-style presentation, and he left the stage to a standing ovation.
Gokey returned to the stage for two more songs before turning the microphone over to Adcox, who related his story with the Southern accent that was characteristic of several of Goff’s entourage. He said that he had been abused as a child, got caught up in an effort to self-medicate, and eventually sought help for addiction and mental health problems.
After achieving his own sobriety, Adcox began to help others work through twelve-step programs. Since his recovery from addiction he has “been turning my mess into my message,” he said. His reputation for helping others recover from addiction grew and he became a regular guest on the Dr. Phil show. At one point, he hosted a talk show on the Fox network.
Adcox was humble about his ability to contribute to others, “I don’t have anything to stand on but my story,” he said. Nevertheless, as blessings accumulated in his life he “realized my dreams were beginning to come true.” Finally, he found his way to his current role on Goff’s team. Adcox finished by noting his favorite proverb that espouses the virtues of twelve-step groups, “Rows inform; circles heal.”
Goff stepped in to wrap up the evening with a word of encouragement to the audience. “You’re our church, too,” he said. Then he asked the three women in his troupe to come to the stage. Korie Robertson, Jody Luke, and Dae Eriksson each promised to keep the audience in prayer and offered hopeful words to San Quentin’s residents. Korie Robertson said, “You’re in our hearts.”
“Bob Goff is a kindhearted and loving person and the people he brings in are cut out of the same cloth,” said San Quentin resident Kenny Rogers, nodding and smiling enthusiastically. He added, “All of them are loving Christians that believe in helping people.”
Gokey returned to the stage to close “Adventures in Faith and Love” with a final song. A line of San Quentin residents formed to seek autographs from the celebrity visitors and to offer their thanks for the visit, bringing a close to an evening of laughter, tears, cheers, and inspiration.
Kairos is a Christian, spiritually-oriented program that sponsors a four-day retreat in San Quentin designed to enhance self-realization. Forty-two men from San Quentin recently joined the ranks of individuals who have completed Kairos, which conducts the retreat twice a year – usually on Presidents’ day weekend and Labor Day weekend. The most recent retreat, Kairos 54, took place February 14-17th in the San Quentin Garden Chapel.
Sponsor David Takeuchi said, “It’s a great blessing to see how these men walk in their spiritual journey. These men help me more then I help them. I’ve been doing this for the last six years.”
Forty sponsors from the outside community spent Valentine’s Day weekend in order to be a part of Kairos 54.
Ben Henry, a Kairos 54 lead sponsor, explained, “The Angels (wives of the sponsors) help with cooking, organizing, and keeping the retreat on track through the weekend. I am involved in this (Kairos) to get a sense from the incarcerated that are ready to return as to how they are worthy to get involved and build community within the prison. This program is based on our faith and belief in Christ; however, it is welcome to all. We have had all religions attend Kairos. We are not here to convert anyone.”
“Honestly, Kairos has been an eye opener,” said San Quentin resident Anthony Davis. “ I’ve heard some things preached that I’ve never heard before in church. It is nice to talk with people with similar backgrounds. A sponsor that came in was locked up for 27 years. The prayer list is amazing. At one time there were 10 people praying for us, brothers from the outside. It has also been fun and every minute each day has been filled with exciting activities. Not only has this program restored my faith, but also it has restored my faith in people. I have just experienced more love in the last 24 hours then I have in a long time. Kairos taught me to make a friend, be a friend and bring a friend to Christ,”
The candidates praised time spent with Kairos.
“My experience with Kairos was excellent! My current role is a lead man, which entails organizing the candidates and servers for each Kairos event,” said inmate Luis Figueras.
Months of preparation go into the organizing of each Kairos event.
Lead sponsor Ben Henry said, “This is my first time as a lead man of Kairos, which only happens once. It is a lot of work we do. We do team member recruiting in our community to bring in new volunteers. We try to bring in new volunteers each cycle; we try to bring in a one-third of the people new. We have 16 meetings on Saturdays, preparing for this event and the environment of the prison. We try to create team building before we come in, that way we are bonded before, that way we know who we are as people and as a Kairos, and there is never one that is the same. Every one is the best one, especially for the candidates. We try to organize the talks and meditations in a sequence that makes sense and gives the candidates the best experience. It is always a different experience, but the same message: the message of Kairos is that the Holy Spirit always makes its way through and helps us make it happen for the men involved. It is about family.”
Sponsor Dick Tiff said, “Kairos is always good. I have been involved with Kairos for 20 years at different prisons. We find out through this experience that we are all ordinary men; we all have faults and we all should be forgiven for our sins. It’s great to come back and see all these transformed men.”
The responses of the participants reflect many different approaches to self-realization:
— “This has been very educational; it opens my mind to coping mechanisms that I’ll be able to use when I get out. I get out next summer and plan to use some of the tools that I have gained through this spiritual experience. The men that come in treat you like human beings. They do not push anything on you. However, they lead you to water and let you know it is good to be thirsty. The free coffee and cupcakes are great also,” said candidate Kenneth Wilkerson.
–“The reason I’m attending Kairos is because many friends told me to attend; they wouldn’t tell me what was going to happen. However, they told me that I would experience the love of God. I have come to know that these people do care and they want us to know that we are worthy human beings, worthy of God’s love and that we can change for the better, that we do not have to stay within our previous mold. I ask God to take my addiction to drugs away from me, and so far I have been clean for a year. I’ve been in prison for seven years and I’ve never felt the love that I’ve felt this weekend,” said candidate Marc Radfcliffe.
–“Kairos is a true blessing; these volunteers do not have to be here. The commitment that they give to us ‑- four days with us, they eat the same food as us, stay away from their family and all for us. Coming to the Lord, that is what it is all about. We’re in here with no Correctional Officer. Something could pop off; however, it doesn’t because of our love for the Lord,” said San Quentin inmate Drake Walker.
Kairos is a family affair; one of the sponsors was introduced to Kairos as a youth and is still involved today.
“Been volunteering with Kairos since age 21,” said outside sponsor Joseph Hughes. “My stepfather brought me into helping with Kairos. My wife is Christian and supports my involvement with Kairos. However, it was a little harder this time since I have a 10-month-old. I do strength and conditioning at Pittsburg High School and one of the people in Kairos 54 is the father of a kid I coach. This is the first time I have given a talk at a Kairos event — the talk was called ‘You are not alone.’ The groups here at San Quentin are now more open to this experience since the prison has transitioned.”
“To me it’s a gift that my husband is serving God; that’s the best Valentine’s Day gift. The love that my husband has for God is amazing,” said Marilyn Hughes, Joseph’s wife.
On the final night, the candidates passed between two lines of clapping supporters cheering them on, and they entered the chapel where the final remarks were made.
“Go Light Your World” was sung to complete the program.
“Rich in Culture, Rich in Tradition” read a blazing red banner at San Quentin’s annual Spring Pow Wow. The February 28 event was to celebrate the incoming Native American New Year.
“When the flowers begin to blossom it signals to us the New Year has arrived,” said Hector Heredia, SQ Native American chaplain, beaming with joy.
In North American indigenous cultures, the New Year is at the end of January or the first part of February, based on constellations and moon phases, according to a Manataka American Indian Council website article. The New Year is the time to celebrate the return of the sacred foods. According to some tribal tradition the first food that was created was the salmon and the second food was the deer.
Family, guests and prisoners filled San Quentin’s visiting room for the festivities. Indian sun, hoop and fancy dancers twirled and stomped around the visiting area to bless the event, as the scent of sage purified the air. The coronavirus scare and its associated deaths were not lost on the large crowd’s minds. The native elders chanted the “Black Wolf” song, a sacred prayer to honor the medicine men and ancestors, as the colorful tribal dancers moved around the pounding ceremonial drum.
“It’s the ceremony of life and death,” said Michael Paul Littlevoice, a visiting fancy dancer. “The drum and song is to honor our medicine people who are dwindling.”
Littlevoice said he’s from the Ponca tribe, but the “Black Wolf” chant comes from one of the oldest clans of the Choctaw tribe. Littlevoice, dressed in colorful rainbow regalia and eagle feathers, travels around the country performing the traditional buffalo and horse dances. The dances are for purification and healing as the steps are intended to banish evil.
“I don’t dance for entertainment,” said Littlevoice. “I dance for you all and your families’ healing. Dance is prayer and prayer is the key to life.”
Lee Planco, 82, a visiting elder, spoke about Native Americans’ struggles to institute religious services and to uphold Indian rights within the nation’s correctional systems. Examples are: sweat lodges, opposing grooming standards (cutting off their hair) and performing sacred rituals.
“We have to honor the ones who have fought for these things,” said Planco, who is a veteran, retired correctional officer and chaplain. “It took us seven years to get a sweat lodge in a Nevada prison. I had to tell their administration that I fought for this country and that includes the freedom of religion. They thought about it for a second and said OK,” reflected Planco.
Planco and Heredia, both military veterans, have a have a long history of Indian advocacy work. They both were a part of what they call the “Longest Walk.” In 1978, Native Americans walked from San Francisco to Washington, D.C. to protest 11 bills that were before Congress at that time. The bills would have limited rights to tribal government, hunting, and fishing. They also would have restricted access to social services by closing Native American schools and hospitals.
The 3,000-mile march started at Alcatraz Island in San Francisco. The marchers were a mixture of non-native and Native Americans. The group of more than 2,000 would stop along the route and hold “teach-ins” about native culture, beliefs, and practices in various cities and towns, according to the Global Nonviolent Action Database. The trip took five months, but after more than 12 days of demonstrations and rallies in the D.C. area, Congress rejected all 11 proposed bills.
“Don’t take for granted the things you have,” Planco said to the men in blue. “We never had jails or prisons in our ancient world. So get out and don’t come back here—get out and honor your mother.”
Gregory “White Eagle” Coates, a San Quentin resident, performed a song on his cedar flute honoring all women. Visiting Hoop dancer Eddie Medril taught the prison residents the hoop dance.
“The dance tells a story of creation and honoring your ancestors,” said Medril. “When people walk as an individual it’s easy to forget their foundations. But when you start to look back at your ancestors, you can say I come from that— and that will give you the strength of more than you.
“Then you will know that you are a part of an empire and become unstoppable,” Medril added.
The magnetic sounds of the pounding drums bought out San Quentin’s new acting Warden, Ron Broomfield. Warden Broomfield joined the festivities and shared words of encouragement and inclusiveness. He has been making the rounds at prison programs and services.
The New Year celebration ended with a feast of salmon, the sacred food, and fry bread.
“Today was awesome,” said Joe Renteria, an SQ resident. “I believe everyone should experience this. If you look for your roots, you will find peace with the ‘Great Grandfather,’ just like a lot of us lost Indians do.”
Be it California or Mississippi, when news of suicides, murders or riots reaches any prison population the feeling is always the same: “damn”—if it’s spoken or not. Especially if you’ve been through it or witnessed these things.
Society might think “there goes those violent monsters acting up again.” What is rarely discussed is that we are a product of the society. Most of us incarcerated and are Americans, and America is filled with double standards (we’ll get to that later) and most of the time breeds intolerance.
Black people and others are still suffering under racism, and we don’t have to go back to slavery to see this. Black people can’t BBQ, sell water or lose cigarettes without the police being called. A Black man was even arrested for eating a sandwich at a San Francisco BART transit station platform. We can’t even sit in our own homes without being shot and killed.
Have we ever talked about collective trauma? It’s not just individuals who suffer. It’s whole communities. Our immigrant community is being detained, and kids are/have been separated from their parents—OK, more trauma. Our President even ordered the assassination of a Iranian general using violence in the name of stopping violence.
Have we been raised to be intolerant against any and everyone who is not like us (on both sides)? Has violence been shown as a way to solve our problems? Is this learned behavior?
We witnessed our President say that he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue in broad daylight and not get charged. Damn! That’s a criminal threat, or what we incarcerated call a “terrorist threat,” and people in here are doing three to five years, if not a life sentence, for a statement such as that.
During President Trump’s House impeachment trial started by the Democrats—more separation—Trump was alleged to have attempted to strong arm, bribe or leverage—or whatever a good word choice would be (quid pro quo)—to get the Ukrainian president to investigate his rival, excuse me, his possible political opponent, for his own advantage.
Once again, there are hundreds of thousands of people serving long sentences for attempting to do a crime. But what really was most interesting to those incarcerated was how the Republicans, Trump’s “homies” (supporters), kept touting that all the evidence against him was just hearsay. Wait, wait, wait—how many people are sitting in U.S. prisons and jails convicted on hearsay evidence? And I haven’t yet mentioned the venomous call to reveal the name of the whistleblower. Trump’s supporters came just short of calling the confidential informant a “snitch.”
When the smoke cleared Trump was impeached in the House (by his rivals) on “Abuse of Power” and “Obstruction of Justice.”
But, he was acquitted by the majority Republican Senate. Imagine that! a jury of one’s peers. I think most people incarcerated would have loved to have their friends, supporters or homies on their juries. It wouldn’t be hard to guess the outcome.
Now let’s talk about prison violence and reform. When people are sentenced to 800 plus years, what is expected? They have officially written their lives off and wonder what they have to live for or if they will ever see the streets again. Add to that, they are incarcerated in harsh and questionable conditions.
There is a huge hidden cost of incarceration that is born by friends and families of prisoners, the Marshall Project https://www.themarshallproject.org/2019/12/17/the-hidden-cost-of-incarceration reports.
“The Bureau of Justice Statistic reckons that the United States spends more than $80 billion each year to keep roughly 2.3 million people behind bars,” the Dec. 17 story said.
“Many experts say that figure is a gross underestimate, though, because it leaves out myriad hidden costs that are often borne by prisoners and their loved ones,” the report stated.
The Prison Policy Initiative https://www.prisonpolicy.org/ estimates families spend $2.9 billion a year on commissary accounts and phone calls.
The story lists several family cost examples:
Telita Hayes sends $200 each month to the prison trust account of her ex-husband William Reese, confined to the Louisiana State Penitentiary https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Louisiana_State_Penitentiary for the last 28 years.
The $2,161 placed in his account this year is but one of many “hidden” costs incurred by Hayes, according to the Marshall Project article. She’s also paid $3,586 for collect calls and $419 for e-mails.
“I think the biggest misconception that people have about prison is that the state pays for everything,” said Connie Martin, a Hazel Park, Mich., resident. “No one realizes that it’s the friends and families of loved ones who pay.”
Kae Boone, 52, spends $100 a month on her boyfriend, Charles Lee Isaac, 52, serving time at Graceville Work Camp in Florida.
He failed a drug test, a violation of his parole. Boone said the money she sends goes toward toiletries and food.
Sending the money has forced her to make tradeoffs, struggling to pay her own bills. “I had one of my cars repossessed because I would prefer to send him money and make sure he’s taken care of,” she said.
A trend that took off during the recession in 2008, when state legislators looked for ways to cut down the cost of incarceration, according to Hadar Aviram, professor at the University of California Hastings College of Law. https://www.uchastings.edu/ “Public prisons are public only by name,” she said. “These days, you pay for everything in prison.”
The state approves vendors that the incarcerated persons can purchase items from or have their families open up an accounts.
The same items that use to be sent in from home now must be purchased from these vendors at inflated cost, the story said.
Hayes said, “The price is jacked up on everything.” She estimated that over the last two years she has spent $10,000 supporting her ex-husband who is serving a life sentence.
California is spending $6.4 million to expand its pre-release tattoo removal program from two locations to 21 prisons and facilities across the state. The effort will take place over the next four years.
The program began in 2018 at the Folsom Women’s Facility and the Custody to Community Transitional Reentry Program in Sacramento under a contract with the California Prison Industry Authority. The large demand for tattoo removal led to the dramatic increase in funding and programs, which will now be under the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR).
“Highly visible tattoos unfortunately present a significant obstacle to employment, and their removal can also signify a new chapter in someone’s life. We treated about 140 women at CCTRP and FWF, with more requesting services beyond what the current contract is able to provide. Hence, the expansion,” says Krissi Khokhobashvili, chief, Office of Externa Affairs, CDCR.
The program will take place at 21 prisons and facilities.
The new sites were chosen based on location – to make sure services are spread throughout the state and be available to all genders and security levels.
CDCR has proposed that those eligible for the procedure have highly visible tattoos. They must also be nearing release to the community or have completed gang debriefing (a formal, multi-step gang disassociation process). Based on the number of members of these two groups, the CDCR estimates that as many as 3,032 people could receive treatment each fiscal year.
While tattoo removal at the two existing programs is done by a mobile tattoo removal unit, the CDCR has not yet determined how the procedures will be carried out in the additional facilities. A decision will be made once the vendors are selected.
The competitive bidding process begins this month. The procedure is an invitation for bid rather than a request for proposal. In an RFP, which is usually for new services and programs, bidders propose how they will deliver their services and the price they will charge. An IFB, on the other hand, gives information on the tattoo removal services and how they will be delivered. It then asks bidders to submit what it would cost them to provide those services.
Those who are interested can find out more information and submit a bid through the Cale Procure website. They can also contact the CDCR’s External Affairs Chief Khokhobashvili, at <Kristina.Khokhobashvili@cdcr.ca.gov> or 916-324-6508. The actual tattoo removal services will begin in January 2020.
CDCR will evaluate the program during year three of the four-year contract to determine its effectiveness. At that point, the department may request additional funding to continue the program and expand tattoo removal services to California’s remaining adult institutions.
Individuals who start their tattoo removal process on the inside but still require
additional treatments for completion once released may be able to find a free or low-cost tattoo removal program by checking out Jails to Jobs’ national directory of these programs.
Jails to Jobs is happy to offer a complimentary copy of our how-to guide for establishing such a program to any organization that plans to create a free or low-cost community-based tattoo removal program. Those interested can contact us to request a copy.
The locations where tattoo removal procedures will soon take place: Avenal State Prison, Central California Women’s Facility (Chowchilla), California Health Care Facility (Stockton), California Men’s Colony (San Luis Obispo), California State Prison-Corcoran, Deuel Vocational Institution (Tracy), Folsom State Prison (men’s), Kern Valley State Prison (Delano), Mule Creek State Prison (Ione), North Kern State Prison (Delano), Pleasant Valley State Prison (Coalinga), California State Prison-Sacramento, Substance Abuse Treatment Facility (Corcoran), Sierra Conservation Center (Jamestown), California State Prison-Solano, San Quentin State Prison, Salinas Valley State Prison (Soledad), Valley State Prison (Chowchilla) and Wasco State Prison.
Arrest rates in California are at a record low, declining by an average of 48% from 1995 levels, a recent study reports.
“Overall arrest rates have fallen 26% since before the start of the justice reform era in 2010,” according to the January fact sheet from the Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice. Decriminalization and legalization of marijuana accounted for more than one-fifths of the decline, approximately 66,000 out of 303,000 arrests.
The most prominent change occurred within the youth, falling by 87% for ages 10-14, 83% for ages 15-17, and 79% for ages 18-19 from 1995 to 2018.
In 2010, the youth arrest rates were 4,445 arrests per 100,000 population and 4,807 adult arrests per 100,000. By 2018, the youth arrest rate had declined to a quarter of the adult rate at 1,113 youth arrests per 100,000 to 3,894 adult arrests.
The figures were released by the California Department of Justice.
By county, 45 of California’s 58 counties report decline in arrest rates, with one-fifths reporting increases. However, all counties except Alpine reported declines in youth arrest rates. Furthermore, “arrest declines are greatest in regions with lower incarceration rates.”
All age groups declined in arrest rates except for those aged 30-39. They increased by 11% from 5,160 arrests per 100,000 in 2010 to 5,714 in 2018.
The author, Mike Males, suggested that this increase correlates with drug overdose deaths and homicides, perhaps warranting “a need for services among Californians in middle adulthood.”