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Posted: 4/2/2006 6:08:34 PM EDT
The liberals here HATE this guy.

Bristol County plate du jour: hard times
Gone are the days of the super-size meals

www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2006/03/31/bristol_county_plate_du_jour_hard_times/

"When I came here, inmates were eating large portions, getting seconds, and having roasts on Sundays," said Bristol County Sheriff Thomas Hodgson. "If you really like milk, don't come here." (Globe Staff Photo / John Tlumacki)

By Brian MacQuarrie, Globe Staff | March 31, 2006

DARTMOUTH -- The 1,360 inmates at the Bristol County House of Correction are eating less these days, whether they like it or not. And many of them don't.

In a move Sheriff Thomas Hodgson said is designed to slash costs and improve health, meal portions have been cut, and the menu has been dramatically changed. Instead of two 8-ounce servings of 1 percent milk a day, inmates now receive one. Two 4-ounce hamburgers at supper have been replaced by one 3-ounce burger. And 1 cup of mixed vegetables at lunch is now strictly limited to one-half cup.

''How much is this guy going to take?" asked prisoner Barry Andrade, 47, speaking of Hodgson. ''How much more can you lose when you touch a plate of food? It's cutting kind of deep."

In protest, hundreds of inmates stopped eating prison food after the cuts took effect March 20. Instead, they bought snacks, crackers, and other items from the prison commissary. But after disturbances in which prisoners threw trays at mealtime and broke a water sprinkler, the numbers of protesters dwindled each day, to about 25 on Monday and none since then.

Hodgson, who has instituted chain gangs, banned weight lifting and television, and tried charging inmates $5 a day for room and board, is defiantly unapologetic.

GLOBE GRAPHIC: Prison menu

YOUR VIEW: Do you agree with the sheriff's actions?

''When I came here, inmates were eating large portions, getting seconds, and having roasts on Sundays," Hodgson said. ''If you really like milk, don't come here."

Hodgson, a Republican reelected to a six-year term in 2004, said that cutting back one serving of milk per day will save the county $62,000 a year. Eliminating coffee, which he has also done, is saving $25,000. Already, he added, the prison's per-meal cost has dropped to 62 cents from 79 cents, for an annual savings of $247,000.

''If you come to prison, there's a cost associated to the taxpayers, of which they get little benefit," Hodgson said. ''I felt it was important that where we could cut costs, we'd do that."

Some inmates and advocates, however, are questioning whether the changes are punitive and designed more to raise Hodgson's profile than to save money and promote healthier eating.

''Sheriff Hodgson has a reputation that he's eager to uphold that he's tough on crime," said Leslie Walker, executive director of Massachusetts Correctional Legal Services, which successfully sued to halt the $5 daily prison fee. ''He seems to think if he's tough on people, they won't want to come back. They don't want to come back."

Patricia Vasconcellos, a spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association who compared the prison's new and old menus, said the new diet falls short of the three daily servings of dairy products recommended by the federal government. Vegetables should also be increased to 2.5 cups per day to match US guidelines, she said. In Day 2 of the prison's 21-day meal cycle, for example, the inmates receive a total of one cup of vegetables: one-half cup of three-bean salad at lunch, and one-half cup of spinach at supper.

Vasconcellos said, however, that the diet should not have any long-term, adverse health effects.

But for prisoners who have long been accustomed to bigger portions, the new austerity has come as a shock, said Cheryl Armstrong, 46, who said she is in prison awaiting trial on drug charges.

Her husband, who is serving a sentence at the House of Correction, wrote her a letter complaining that the portions ''are not enough to serve our 8-year-old grandson," Armstrong said.

''He was going to bed hungry," Armstrong said. ''I was kind of worried about him."

Andrade said that the sheriff, who relishes the nickname Hard Time Hodgson, is a ''tough dude" who has made Bristol County the harshest House of Correction in the state.

''Just like Frank Sinatra said, if you can make it in this jail, you can make it anywhere," said Andrade, a New Bedford man who said he has served seven months for his arrest on an attempted murder charge. Even though he was acquitted, Andrade said, the arrest violated the conditions of his probation and landed him back in prison.

Colleen Tynan, a New Bedford lawyer who has performed much public-defender work in Bristol County, said Hodgson's across-the-board restrictions appear to violate the rights of inmates who have not been convicted and are awaiting trial.

''The problem with the pretrial detainees is that they're presumed innocent," Tynan said. ''To suggest they have asked for the incarceration they're facing because of their pretrial detention is really to exaggerate the position these people find themselves in."

Hodgson dismissed the idea that defendants awaiting trial should receive different, better treatment. ''I don't make the decision why they're sent here," Hodgson said. ''It's not our place to say whether they're innocent or guilty."

In the sheriff's view, prison must be a place that prepares inmates to accept responsibility for their behavior in the outside world.

''The simplest lessons," he said, ''start at the dinner table."




Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:14:41 PM EDT
seems like pretty small portions?
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:15:32 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/2/2006 6:17:55 PM EDT by azhammer]
I didnt read it all yet.......But i'll tell you one thing, Sherrif Joe is is a good man and should be given more credit. We appreciate him very much here and he doesnt budge for libs or criminals.
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:16:32 PM EDT
Is this guy an attention whore like good old Joe?
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:17:26 PM EDT
OOH TEH NOES! how will they ever bulk up to become stronger rapists and robbers upon release?
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:18:37 PM EDT
Sorry.

Your right to Mom's home cooked meals ended when you became a ward of the state.

Don't like it? Too bad.
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:19:53 PM EDT

Originally Posted By USGI_45:
seems like pretty small portions?



I guess that will cut down on the weight lifting.
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:20:03 PM EDT

Originally Posted By LotBoy:
Is this guy an attention whore like good old Joe?



No. I'd never heard of him until I read the article. The comments though, from the libs in the talk section of the Globe forum are hilarious.....
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:21:16 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/2/2006 6:21:46 PM EDT by 95thFoot]

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:

Originally Posted By USGI_45:
seems like pretty small portions?



I guess that will cut down on the weight lifting obesity.




Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:22:31 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:

Originally Posted By USGI_45:
seems like pretty small portions?



I guess that will cut down on the weight lifting.




yeah forget that it was already banned. Also is this a jail or a prison?
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:25:27 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Napoleon_Tanerite:
OOH TEH NOES! how will they ever bulk up to become stronger rapists and robbers upon release?




Dude its a jail not Prison. Probably full of people for shit Like Failure to pay Child support, and DUI, minor drug charges, driving on suspended
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:35:57 PM EDT

Originally Posted By USGI_45:

Originally Posted By Napoleon_Tanerite:
OOH TEH NOES! how will they ever bulk up to become stronger rapists and robbers upon release?




Dude its a jail not Prison. Probably full of people for shit Like Failure to pay Child support, and DUI, minor drug charges, driving on suspended



1. Pay your child support.
2. Don't drive drunk.
3. Don't do illegal drugs.
4. Don't drive on a suspended license.

There. That wasn't hard.
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:39:06 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/2/2006 6:39:46 PM EDT by pale_pony]
2 slices bread, 2 glasses of water OK, OK, all the water you can drink...
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:42:01 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:

Originally Posted By USGI_45:

Originally Posted By Napoleon_Tanerite:
OOH TEH NOES! how will they ever bulk up to become stronger rapists and robbers upon release?




Dude its a jail not Prison. Probably full of people for shit Like Failure to pay Child support, and DUI, minor drug charges, driving on suspended



1. Pay your child support.
2. Don't drive drunk.
3. Don't do illegal drugs.
4. Don't drive on a suspended license.

There. That wasn't hard.




Also dont get charged and not be able to bond out.
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:42:36 PM EDT

Originally Posted By USGI_45:
seems like pretty small portions?



... Well, don't go to jail!
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:43:04 PM EDT

'Just like Frank Sinatra said, if you can make it in this jail, you can make it anywhere," said Andrade, a New Bedford man who said he has served seven months for his arrest on an attempted murder charge. Even though he was acquitted, Andrade said, the arrest violated the conditions of his probation and landed him back in prison.


what the HELL is THAT bullshit?
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:46:48 PM EDT

Originally Posted By pale_pony:
2 slices bread, 2 glasses of water OK, OK, all the water you can drink...



You can't hide the fact you have a big heart.

Hey, they're lucky I'm not the sheriff. They'd be eating what they could grow!
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:49:16 PM EDT

Originally Posted By USGI_45:

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:

Originally Posted By USGI_45:

Originally Posted By Napoleon_Tanerite:
OOH TEH NOES! how will they ever bulk up to become stronger rapists and robbers upon release?




Dude its a jail not Prison. Probably full of people for shit Like Failure to pay Child support, and DUI, minor drug charges, driving on suspended



1. Pay your child support.
2. Don't drive drunk.
3. Don't do illegal drugs.
4. Don't drive on a suspended license.

There. That wasn't hard.




Also dont get charged and not be able to bond out.




If I was wrongly charged with a crime, the last thing I would be upset about would not be missing my second cheeseburger.
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 6:56:33 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:

Originally Posted By USGI_45:

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:

Originally Posted By USGI_45:

Originally Posted By Napoleon_Tanerite:
OOH TEH NOES! how will they ever bulk up to become stronger rapists and robbers upon release?




Dude its a jail not Prison. Probably full of people for shit Like Failure to pay Child support, and DUI, minor drug charges, driving on suspended



1. Pay your child support.
2. Don't drive drunk.
3. Don't do illegal drugs.
4. Don't drive on a suspended license.

There. That wasn't hard.




Also dont get charged and not be able to bond out.




If I was wrongly charged with a crime, the last thing I would be upset about would not be missing my second cheeseburger.



tell me that 6 weeks into your wrongly charged no bond stay.

Of course, I've lived on a hell of a lot less out here.

Link Posted: 4/2/2006 7:51:50 PM EDT
Prison? Jail? WTF?

Its called PUNISHMENT
Dont like the time, Dont do the dam crime period.
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 8:04:25 PM EDT
Hardees has two double 1\4lb cheese bugers for $3 and this thread made me hungry.

Gotta find my keys.
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 8:08:59 PM EDT
I think most all of us have committed crimes which could land us at least 3 mos. in the pokey. Driving 20 over, hitting a curb, shouting at a roomate, getting a blow job, stuff like that.

My only concern is that nutritional requirements are met. You can't starve people.

Especially people who haven't even gone on trial yet.
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 8:14:44 PM EDT
Some guys here like to talk tough with this "don't break the law" crap, but consider how easy it is to get a chumped-up gun charge in MA or CA.

Would you want to be treated like shit?
Link Posted: 4/2/2006 9:21:12 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mattja:
Some guys here like to talk tough with this "don't break the law" crap, but consider how easy it is to get a chumped-up gun charge in MA or CA.

Would you want to be treated like shit?



as long as the food provides adquate nutrition fuck em.
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