Early in 2019, Greene County, NY voted to fund a new jail due to the old one being closed down due to unsafe conditions. This jail is estimated to cost a total of about $70 million to construct, and $5 million per year to maintain. It is divided as such:
This jail would be constructed in Coxsackie, which is home to two state prisons: Greene and Coxsackie correctional facilities. The county jail would have 80 beds, requiring about 40 staff to maintain. This is despite the fact Greene County only has, on average, 30 prisoners. This is expected to drop to 15-20 when a new state law goes into effect in January 2020, which aims to reduce the number of those held before trial.
On May 5th, 2019, over one hundred people went to the Greene County Courthouse steps to protest the jail, asking the county government to "Pause and Rethink" the jail. There were many speakers, myself included as part of the community. A link to the audio can be found here, with my speech starting at about 01:03:30. Our hope is to instead prioritize education, repairing the subsidized "Section 8 Housing", and other parts of the county that need help much more than the jail.
Myself at the Rally on May 5th, 2019
My activism will not stop here. I hope to make sure this county remains a safe place for all those who live here. This will include starting an LGBT group for adults in the county, promoting better workers' rights, environmentalism, artistry, and education.