Letters to the Editor

Aging inmates Lake Stevens

Not only is one in every 100 American adults incarcerated but due to our mandatory minimum sentencing laws, we have a rapidly aging prison population. Statistics show that one in every 23 persons incarcerated in this country is 55 years old or older. Did you know that the cost of incarceration for those older people increases threefold?

Japan is building three new penal facilities for their aging prison population with elevators, wheelchair ramps and other disabled-access features to the tune of $78 million. With our slumping economy and budget deficits statewide, Washington will be forced to spend money they don't have when these expansions become necessary here.

Incidentally, experts tell us that age is the foremost factor in crime reduction.

Lea Zengage

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