Pubdate: Thu, 23 Sep 2010
Source: Monday Magazine (CN BC)
Copyright: 2010 Monday Publications
Author: Joanna Wilkinson


Re: "New Habits," September 16-22

Thanks for the great front page and follow-up article on David 
Mitchell. It does show what is possible. Imagine if we used the money 
to keep one addict in jail-close to $100,000 per person a year-and 
used it instead to support projects such as the Vancouver Island 
Addiction Recovery Society.

I am aware of one such person who was incarcerated at William Head. 
In our Restorative Justice circle, he mentioned he was our "million 
dollar man." As a heroin addict, allergic to methadone, he was unable 
to kick his habit; doctors refused to give him an option to 
methadone, so he kept being sent back to prison. His "crime" was that 
of breaching the conditions of his parole.

It seems to me that a million dollars could be better spent for 
restorative programs. A million dollars of taxpayers' money keeping 
one person in prison for non-violent offences is a waste on all 
counts. It is not more prisons that we need.

Joanna Wilkinson,
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