LUDLOW- Sheriff Michael J. Ashe Jr. that sentenced inmates in the custody of the Hampden County Sheriff’s Department are averaging 47.16 hours of productive activity per week.
It has been two years since Sheriff Ashe announced the goal of sentenced inmates putting in 40 hour or more of productive activities a week.
Ashe set the goal of a 40 hour work week because that is the standard work week for the taxpayers who pay to upkeep the correctional center, and because he believes that inmates should develop discipline work habits while they are incarcerated to better enable them to be productive when they re-enter the community. Ashe believes that inmates who are ready, willing and able to work a 40-hour week are less likely to come back to jail.
Productive activities include work assignments, such as housekeeping work in the living units, kitchen work, laundry work, maintenance work and ground crew. They also include community service restitution and work in the prison industry program wherein inmates make all inmate uniforms worn at the jail. Also included are activities that prepare the inmates to be productive citizen, such substance abuse and treatment, boot camp, vocational training, and GED preparation.
The 47.16 average hours of work per week by sentence inmates in the custody of the Sheriff’s Department breaks down to the following averages for individual facilities: inmates at the Hampden County Correctional Center are averaging 42.47 hours of work per week; inmates of the Pre- Release/Minimum security Center are averaging 58.15 hours of work per week; inmates at the Western Massachusetts Correctional Alcohol Center are averaging 43.25 hours of work per week; participants in the Day Reporting Center are averaging 48.45 hours of work per week.
The actual hours that inmates are involved with productive activities may be even greater because the above averages do not include homework or study time; spiritual services; or educational programming not in a formalized classroom.
Specialized population such as those in special management and those in the accountability pod are not included in these work averages figures.