Combine these symptoms with being in a confined and crowded space and you have a recipe for disaster. Sheriff Steve Burns found a solution to the violent incidents taking place in the East Tennessee jails in his jurisdiction. The solution was allowing inmates access to e cigarettes.
By addressing the nicotine addiction of inmates, the jails have seen a very noticeable decrease in fights and violent incidents. Sheriff Burns only allowed this access after deliberating the pros and cons, no pun intendedJ
E-cigarettes are unlikely to set off smoke alarms nor are they likely to be made into weapons. In order to ensure safety, jail commissaries will not sell an e cigarette to an inmate unless they return their used one.
Another benefit of allowing inmates access to e cigarettes has been the reduction in black market cigarette and contraband activity in the jails. The impact of reducing black market activity leads to obvious security benefits for both inmates and jail staff.
Since first allowing e cigarettes last August, the impact has made East Tennessee jails more secure and safer for all involved. Sheriff Burns’ innovative approach is paying immediate dividends.
Jails in Kansas, Kentucky and elsewhere have also allowed e cigarettes to be sold to inmates in county jails and seen similar results. So far, state prisons have been reluctant to allow e cigarettes. Given the tangible results experienced by county jails, we can only hope that state prison systems across the country take note.
Until next time we wish you happy vaping and stay out of trouble!