Saturday, May 7, 2011

Milwaukee Secure Detention Facility: Wasted Tax Money Yet a Lesson in Diversity

Written on April 9, 2011,

   Well, I’ve been at M.S.D.F. since Wednesday, April 6th. It took me a little while to get settled in.  After the bus ride here, we unloaded our property from the bus. Then we went into the intake area of the building.  It was like D.C.I. all over again.  Bright yellow uniforms were issued to us after yet another strip search.  Then we took new pictures for our new IDs.  Funny thing is, they’re identical to the last ones we had!  We then had another Psych. Evaluation, even though all of our medical records came with us, including our last Psych. Evaluation.  If you ask me, it’s all a huge waste of time, and a poor excuse to waste tax dollars on a facility like this.  In all my experience with the Department of Corrections in Wisconsin, this facility has got to be the poorest use of money (tax dollars) that I have seen yet.  It is run like a Super Max Prison and is only classified as minimum/medium security. 

   Next we were taken, one by one, to stand at a table while they sorted through our property.  They also introduced us to the gourmet-style meals we’ll be enduring over the next six months.  They decided to not let my second set of headphones in, along with some random adapters for my T.V., an extension cord, and my sneakers.  All of this stuff gets boxed up until I leave this facility, whether to go home or to another facility.

   A short while later the C. O.s brought us up to the ninth level to our temporary cells in General Population.  A lot of people in my position would have been really out of place in this unit.  I was the only person from the group that is starting ERP soon to be put in this unit.  I also am exactly half of the Caucasian population in this unit!  There are 44 inmates, 2 of which are white, 3 are Hispanic, and 39 are black.  I see a lot of people getting intimidated if they are in my position, but I don’t let it bother me that I’m the minority in here.  I guess I’m kind of used to it by now. 

   First they put me in a cell on the lower tier with an older guy (54) and he was one hell of a talker.  He meant well but sort of annoyed me with his repetitiveness.  After being his cellmate for a day, they moved me to the upper tier so someone coming in with some sort of a problem with walking up stairs could have my bunk.  My new cellmate is 25 and is cool by me.  We get along alright.  He asks me questions about white people and it cracks me up!  I guess stereotypes go BOTH ways!!!  We watch a lot of the same T.V. shows so that helps out too.  Then we don’t always have to wear our headphones.  Anyways, I’m glad we get along.  Some of the other guys give him shit in the unit because he has a white cellie.  They really didn’t know what to think when they heard us up until 3 A.M. the first night after I moved in.  We just sat up talking, laughing, and joking for a long time.  Everyone was dumbfounded the next day when they said, “We heard you and your cellie up choppin’ it up all night last night.”  He just said back, “Yeah, he’s cool as hell, actually.”  Then the weird looks, and everything I normally got, went away.  Anyhow, the lights are about to go out for the night. 

Until tomorrow…

~J. Doe

No comments:

Post a Comment