For relatives of the incarcerated, holidays are marked by grief and loss

The Boston GlobeDecember 23, 2021By Julia Carlin Shanita Jefferson filled a Christmas package with 75 family photographs, some handwritten letters, and a drawing from her daughter. She sent it to her mother at MCI-Framingham Correctional Facility. Jefferson, of Weymouth, said she hates knowing that her mother, who has been in prison for 31 years, will […]

WGBH Greater Boston: Sustaining An Emotional Life Line For Those Behind Bars

WGBH GREATER BOSTON: SUSTAINING AN EMOTIONAL LIFE LINE FOR THOSE BEHIND BARS While conversations about criminal justice reform have gained more traction recently, they generally have focused on issues of reducing the number of people sent to prison or jail. But advocates stress the need to also address conditions for those who are currently incarcerated, […]

Visits to Mass. prisoners fall sharply under new rules

The Boston Globe July 11th, 2019 By Mark Arsenault “Many studies have been done, including by the DOC, that correlate prison visits with reduced recidivism,” said Elizabeth Matos, director of Prisoners’ Legal Services of Massachusetts, a nonprofit advocacy group for inmates. Prisoners who receive more visits have fewer incidents of misconduct while incarcerated and a […]

Prison advocates applaud changes to state prison visitation policies

MassLive March 20, 2019 By Shira Schoenberg Advocates for prisoners are celebrating small changes the Department of Correction made to its prison visitation rules, even as they continue to press for far more significant shifts. “Some may say that this is a small little change, but we think it’s incremental change that says a lot about […]

New visitor limits for state-run prisons

March 9, 2018 The Lowell Sun By Rick Sobey SHIRLEY — The Middlesex County sheriff sometimes physically notices inmates getting ready for family visits. “They look forward to it, keeping themselves groomed for their families,” said Middlesex Sheriff Peter Koutoujian. Maintaining that face-to-face connection with their families is critical for an inmates’ successful re-entry to […]

Limit on Mass. prison visits is unfair punishment

March 2, 2018 The Boston Globe Among the factors that most influence recidivism rates among prisoners is their ability to maintain strong family ties. A review of studies found that in-person visits result in a 26 percent reduction in recidivism. The impact is higher for men: They experience a 53 percent decline. Family visits are also correlated […]

Sheriff Hodgson strikes again

August 5, 2017 The Boston Globe Bristol County Sheriff Thomas M. Hodgson has hit on a new idea to mistreat the inmates he’s been elected to rehabilitate: deprive them of in-person family visits. If that seems too cruel to be true, take note that this is the same sheriff who infamously volunteered his prisoners as free labor […]

Proposed changes to privileges, regulations have prisoners on edge

By Milton Valencia The Boston Globe October 12, 2016 series of proposed changes to Department of Correction guidelines has prisoner rights-advocates, and specifically the prisoners themselves, on edge. The proposals include changes to department policies in prisoner mail, telephone and visitation privileges, including at the maximum security prison in Shirley, known as the Souza-Baranowski Correctional […]