Irene Jacqueline Seale:
20 years with no parole and no rehabilitation
I am a federal prisoner, a 56 year old woman, wife, mother and grandmother. I raise a question that could have a positive impact on society. That is reinstatement of parole for federal prisoners.
Having served close to 11 years on my 20 year sentence, I can attest at first hand how reinstatement of parole would provide society with tax paying citizens rather than tax draining prisoners.
Currently, federal prisoners do 85 per cent of their time. This translates into many here doing as little as possible. A trash call job requires 15 minutes a day, 5 days a week. Women with these jobs do little else. There are no education classes, no spiritual programs, no craft programs, no exercise classes. There is no way to save money for release or pay more than minimal amounts toward assessment fees or fines.
Some people here may not have been self-directed before imprisonment. With no prospect of parole, what motivation can there be to improve oneself? An opportunity to appear before a parole board after serving, say, one third of a sentence would provide some motivation. In the old days, before parole was abolished for federal prisoners, I heard that a parole board would even make suggestions to help a prisoner’s return to society.
I do not want to see violent, dangerous prisoners released. But many women here are decent human beings who have done no real harm to society.
Bring back parole and let the parole board differentiate between kinds of prisoners. Real justice and mercy.
Irene Jacqueline Seale