Springfield open house shows inmate-made products
Sep. 10, 2014
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Products made by Illinois prison inmates will be demonstrated and displayed in Springfield starting Wednesday.
Illinois Correctional Industries will host a two-day open house at the Illinois Department of Corrections' Concordia Campus to show off goods including outdoor furniture made from recycled materials and meat products such as hamburgers, the State Journal-Register reported (http://bit.ly/1AxwFwc ).
Illinois Correctional Industries CEO Jen Aholt said organizers hope to attract anyone who has a business that could hire inmates. The biggest customers are other state agencies, county and local governments and nonprofit organizations, she said.
Different prisons manufacture various items including signs in Lincoln and wooden officer furniture in Hillsboro. Inmates at the Illinois River Correctional Center bake 16 million pounds of dough every year.
Working Illinois inmates can make up to $1.40 an hour. Some of that money is sent to the state's victim fun, and inmates can save some for after their release.
Inmates who participate in work programs nationally have a lower recidivism rate than the total inmate population, Aholt said.