Have Healthy Food for Prisoners at Cook County Jail

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I am a high schooler in Chicago, and in my English class I read Just Mercy, and I started to realize the mistreatments people received in prison on a daily basis, but what drew more of my attention was the lack of food and nutrition they got. If you connect the physical and psychological abuse to the lack of basic nutrition, it can be devastating for the inmates' mind and body. Food is a basic human right, and it becomes inhumane when economically they are able to be fed better and more.
Herr are some statistics to think about:
6 percent of all confirmed outbreak-related cases of foodborne illness in the United States took place in correctional institutions

Most common food-safety-hazard-related outbreaks were easily preventable: 26 percent involved food handled by an infected person, while 24 percent involved “inadequate cleaning of processing or preparation equipment or utensils.”

Prison Voice Washington found that food costs make up less than 4% of the daily cost of incarcerating a prisoner — compared with healthcare, which accounts for 19% of the cost.

Study found that adding vitamins to the diets of inmates at a maximum-security institution cut offenses by 25 percent. The greatest reduction was for serious offenses, including violence, which fell by 40 percent.

Incarcerated people suffer disproportionately from chronic health conditions. 30% of incarcerated people have hypertension, 10% heart problems, and 9% diabetes

They are made worse by menus with too much sodium and fat and not enough fiber and essential nutrients from fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.


Saul, Andrew W. “Corrective Nutrition: How Vitamins for Prisoners Would Save Taxpayers' Money.” Chicagotribune.com, 21 Dec. 2017, 05/16/18, www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/commentary/ct-perspec-nutrition-multivitamins-prisoners-prison-tb-wheat-germ-1222-story.html

Brown, Joe Fassler and Claire. “Prison Food Is Making U.S. Inmates Disproportionately Sick.” The Atlantic, Atlantic Media Company, 27 Dec. 2017, 5/16/18, www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2017/12/prison-food-sickness-america/549179/

Santo and Iaboni , Alyssa and Lisa. “What's in a Prison Meal?” The Marshall Project, ANDY Rossaback, 5 Jan. 2018, 5/16/18, www.themarshallproject.org/2015/07/07/what-s-in-a-prison-meal

Sawyer, Wendy. “Food for Thought: Prison Food Is a Public Health Problem.” Mass Incarceration: The Whole Pie 2016 | Prison Policy Initiative, 5/16/18, www.prisonpolicy.org/blog/2017/03/03/prison-food/

Petitions to Sign:

Give Texas Prisoners Three Meals a Day:


All Federal Prisons Should Give Their Prisoners Fresh Fruits and Vegetables: