Right steps taken at York prison

Our Waterford High School civics class took a trip to York Correctional Institution in Niantic. After experiencing life inside prison, I have some thoughts about the prison reform in Connecticut. The current prison reform implemented by the state will benefit current and future prisoners by correcting their behavior.

Implementing correctional programs will help the prisoners’ transition from prison life to civilian life. It will limit the number of repeat offenders and prison will finally serve a purpose to correct one's behavior. One woman whom we spoke to participates in a program that works with East Lyme Parks and Recreation. She claims it helps her gain work experience and leadership skills for life outside of prison. There was also a mentorship program to help new prisoners mature into upstanding citizens.

In the past, Connecticut prisons hardly had any correctional programs. According to the Connecticut Recidivism Study, 56 percent of offenders released in 2008 were rearrested. This statistic begs for a solution to limit the number of repeat offenders. With this new reform set in place by the state, I finally feel like we are taking the right steps to correct prisoners' behaviors and turn them into upstanding citizens.

Benjamin Jerome



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