An Article for All Times: Is It Now a Crime to Be Poor?
“It turned out that Mr. Szekely, who is an ordained minister and does not drink, do drugs or curse in front of ladies, did indeed have a warrant — for not appearing in court to face a charge of ‘criminal trespassing’ (for sleeping on a sidewalk in a Washington suburb). So he was dragged out of the shelter and put in jail. ‘Can you imagine?’ asked Eric Sheptock, the homeless advocate (himself a shelter resident) who introduced me to Mr. Szekely. ‘They arrested a homeless man in a shelter for being homeless.’”
Wholly Related: Do the crime, pay for the time, as in $90 a day
“Sheriff Joe Arpaio . . . makes prisoners sleep in tents in 100-degree-plus heat. Earlier this year, he announced that inmates would be charged $1.25 per day for meals. His decision followed months of food strikes staged by inmates who complained of being fed green bologna and moldy bread.” “Sheriff Arpaio, who makes inmates wear pink underwear to increase the humiliation factor, also taps prisoner accounts.” “The money was to be collected by seizing cash in their jail accounts or by filing lawsuits. The proposal also would have denied parole to those who could not make payments after being freed.” “’It makes no sense to release people with $25, a bus ticket and $40,000 in reimbursement fees,’ she said. ‘Saddling people with thousands of dollars in debt is contradictory to helping someone become a functioning member of society.”‘