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  • #3
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    Prisoners are helping train companion dogs too, for autistic children and the elderly, etc. This will look good on an ex-con's resume when they get out, too.
  • #29
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    They have been doing that in my state for decades. It has benefited dogs & inmates. Dogs with problems become socialized and more adoptable & inmates learn to develop attachments beyond gangs and self interest. Canines have been useful helpmates for humans for thousands of years. They help the blind, deaf and PTOC vets among others.
  • #25
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    There is also a program where a few Florida inmates help raise and train "guide dogs in training! The program came about with Lions International and SE Guide Dogs.
  • #21
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    Definitely good move for both the dog and the inmate.

    I was 5 years in Federal Prison for a pot offense...I would have loved this...ANYTHING to get out of the cell block...

    Jails and prisons...good places to avoid...
  • #13
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    This is wonderful! No greater rehabilitation than learning to connect and nurture another living being... ALL prisons need programs like this!
  • #50
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    @Frosty45 - According to the article, they have these programs for low-level and non-violent offenders... Don't know of any prisons that only have psychopaths...
  • #51
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    Most serial killers & serial rapists are. I not suggesting that ALL anywhere are Psychopaths but those in Max security have a far higher % then less secure facilities.
  • #55
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    @Frosty45 - Most serial killers are psychopaths... Most serial rapists are sociopaths... and most other violent and high-level offenders are sociopaths...

    Maximum security facilities have a higher rate of sociopaths than psychopaths as inmates.
  • #62
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    Those 2 label can be easily applied to the same person. Both provide the same self centered personalities that only care about their own gratification.
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  • #52
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    Now that I clicked "Yes", I want to take it back. At what point in this country are we going to have prison labor doing all of our jobs? WIth the growth of "private prisons" and their lobbying machine pushing more more behaviour to be criminalized and for longer sentences for even minor crimes, and with "private probation companies" locking people up for not being able to pay traffic tickets (especially after they add hundreds of dollars worth of fees to the ticket), we'll soon just have an entire nation fill of prison labor. We have people begging for jobs, the GOP wanting to cut what little assistance remains for the jobless, and now we have a built in labor pool that they can work for literally pennies a day. WalMart has been using this scam for harvesting produce. No need to outsource to China anymore. we insource to the use, but free citizens still don't get a job.
    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2010/12/14/9286...

    http://www.alternet.org/story/151732/21st-cen...
  • #56
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    Bodhisattva - What!? You're against dog-walking as part of an inmates rehab? I personally think it's a great idea for both prisoner and dog. But you bring up an absolutely valid argument against what appears to be the (And I think it's part of GOP's playbook) idea for the outsourcing of everything.

    For profit schools. No minimum wage. Privatize all healthcare. Privatize the prisons. Privatize Social Security. The county where I live is now privatizing all of the county services to the company with the lowest bid. These companies provide no guarantee of full time employment. No benefits. And if their service is poor (RE Example: New Jersey's firing of the company processing Sandy claims cost millions to get out of). it often costs the government entity a great deal of money to get out of a contract.

    The other thing that appears rampant is the award of these outsourcing contracts to those who are connected to the entities who encourage them. And that goes for both parties.

    Wow! I was pleased at how the posts here seemed to be all in agreement, and there couldn't possibly be another side to this discussion, and this was seen as a feel good topic.Thanks for bringing up a good point.

    I see how you clicked 'yes'. As an owner of many dogs (some of them rescues), I'd be all for it. But...... Where does the use of 'volunteers' cross the line into the exploitation of labor for profit? Thanks for the 'bigger picture' observations.
  • #69
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    Thanks, "eyes". We agree on a lot. It would be good therapy for both prisoners and the dogs. We've gone from rehab to warehousing in our prison system, and "dogwalking" isn't exactly a skill that needs a lot of training outside the walls. We're down to 3 dogs, one a replacement for my wife's beloved lab (full blooded but never registered that she stopped and raised hell at some woman who had him chained to a tree, and she gave him to my wife, and 2 mutts who wandered ito the yard, 5 goats (one on her death bed on the back porch on a pallet of pillows receiving the best care a goat has ever received. The vet said if she's over 14 we've must have taken very good care of her since he's seen very few goats live that long. I'm a disabled RN, and still have some of my "chops" left and have been taking good care of her.) 5 inside cats (one a chosen replacement for 2 that got run over by cars, and the rest rescues, except 1 kitten from one when we didn't have the money to get her spayed (that's when i first started with the whole disabled thing). We lived on 15 acres and there we probably over 150 acres that could roam without getting near a road and they went straight to it so these never leave the house-Saw a thing on cats on PBS that said an outside cat has a life expectancy of 2-3 years and an inside one 18-20)) and the "cat ranch" outside that aren't really our cats but we put out food and they come running. We suspect some have several homes. Just yesterday we found a place that said if we claim we'll keep them (and I guess our cat food bill says we do) they spay and neuter them all for free. Yahoo!) We only live on 2 acres now, but still live rurally so there's 100's of acres around.

    I'm like you, it's a tough topic. Are you taking jobs, or is it not going to get done at all and prisoners are the only answer? It all goes back to Grover Norquist's plan to shrink government to the size that you can drown it in the bathtub. Great, since private industry always has our better interests at heart. They may screw up, but at least on the goverment's end there's not a giant profit motive envolved. There may be on the part of the private contractor the government hires, but not on the government's side. Ever since Reagan began pushing this unnatural hatred for anything and everything related to the government (except the military, of course, the most expensive and wasteful part of government) it's gotten way out of hand and brought a whole lot of kooks out of the woodwork. What's really scary is that these would be otherwise rational thinking human beings, but now they fall for every crazy email, conspiracy theory, radio or tv nutjob, and believe any whacked out scheme the right wing throws out there. It's like they've been seleectively lobotomized. I don't get it and don't suppose I ever will. Stay in touch: willieearlhart@yahoo.com
  • #17
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    This type of program has proven to be very successful elsewhere. Why not here? Anyone who calls this exploitation is interested in nothing more than misguided ideology. In other words, you just want to argue.
  • #34
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    I'm assuming (since this article didn't say) that the inmates are volunteers, so exploitation wouldn't apply in this case. Who wouldn't want to get out into the fresh air with a canine companion?
  • #41
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    @Denizen_Kate Well, I don't believe anyone can force prisoners to work. But, those who do work enjoy some privileges that those who don't cannot have. But, like you, I cannot believe that anyone would lay around locked up when they could get out and at least feel some freedom to move around outside.
  • #67
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    It's actually a brilliant idea. Giving children dogs is a way to teach them responsibility. One thing many criminals (violent crime excepted) is that they seem to lack basic life management skills.
  • #33
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    On the one hand, it is rather like having a ready pool of slave labor. On the other hand, if prisoners volunteer (and who wouldn't?), it's a win-win for both felons and canines.
  • #4
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    Good on Florida!

    In the Mericopa county lock-up, prisoners have been responsible for exercising, training and socializing on a volunteer basis for several years now -- Of course, under the tutelage of Uncle Joe Arpaio. <smile>
  • #15
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    @Zazziness

    <chuckle> It's no secret that the 'thumb-sucking' left soils themselves over Sheriff Joe, including this president and his shoulder borne parrot, Eric Holder. He's been accused of all kinds of phony nefarious activities, including getting Ms Daisy's dog pregnant. The Atheist, Communist, Lawyers United, et al are beside themselves in their failed attempts to remove him and close down his tent city jail, but to no avail -- he relishes poking his digital in the eyes of his appoints, and especially the "Open Border" crowd! Take your best shot sweet pea with other liberal attacks against the most popular politician in AZ -- Sic'em Joe!! <grin>
  • #18
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    @S-N-A-F-U <Chuckle> It's no secret fascists everywhere admire the inhumane practices of "Uncle Joe" and overlook the face he leaves sexually abused victims without recourse of the legal system because he is a monster.
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  • #48
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    The inmates are free to walk away any time they want, but when they get caught, it adds five years to a sentence that was originally less than a year.

    Only the really stupid or crazy ones walk away.
  • #78
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    Greyhounds are trained at a few Florida prisons to help make them more adoptable, after being booted off the track as 'losers' or otherwise retired. These dogs live working the track, without play time or learning social skills and prisoners teach them how to just be dogs. They learn how to walk inside on rugs or slippery floors or go up/down steps. They are exposed to scary sounds like a can opener or a microwave ding, and learn to appreciate the smells that come with those too! What dog shouldn't know about a couch or a bed too, right? It's a great program, that helps these pups be seen differently, and the same can be said about those prisoners who put time into the program - for the dogs and for themselves. It's win/win!
  • #75
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    Put them to work - hard work - daily schedule may help teach them to fit into society. Sitting in a cell learning new tricks - pumping iron and each other doesn't breed self worth.
    Teach them to do road repaving - no one stays in his cell unless he's on special lock down. Stop playing liberal nurse maids.
  • #26
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    Stop already! This headline and the question is just stupid. More feel good liberal crap. What if the inmate doesn't want to walk a dog and pick up dog poop? Is that inmate going to be forced to do it?
    Let them make license plates like all good convicts should do.
  • #31
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    The ones I know about prisoners consider it a great reward to get that job. No one ever needed to be forced they had to earn it with good behavior.
  • #35
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    Wow, what side of the keyboard did you wake up on this morning?

    The article doesn't say, but I'm willing to assume this is a voluntary work detail. If you can find fault with this, I pity you.
  • #38
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    @Denizen_Kate
    OK now follow directions carefully, bend over well at the waist and with your right hand grasp your left ear and with your left hand grasp your right ear no stand up quickly and say POP.
    It is just more feel good BS from the libs.
    Why don't we let the prisoners babysit local kids, I'm sure they would like that and it would be a win win as the parents wouldn't need to pay for a babysitter.
    Frosty has the idea. This should be a reward for the ones that earn it.
  • #39
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    @Frosty45
    If that is the way it is handled great but I see that in many cases these ideas start out as a good thing and then spiral out of control. I would see it as a reward. Like in some places they use trustees to help train service dogs. Not a bad idea.
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