Saturday, September 24, 2022

Play

The health-care subsidy extension a relief for small businesses; Consumer groups press for a bill to reform credit reporting; and an international group aims to transform how people view peace and conflict.

Play

Condemnation of Russian war on Ukraine continues at the U.N, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says there's need for worker training to rebuild Puerto Rico, the House takes on record corporate profits while consumers struggle with inflation.

Play

The Old Farmer's Almanac predicts two winters across the U.S., the Inflation Reduction Act could level the playing field for rural electric co-ops, and pharmacies are dwindling in rural America.

Groups Call for Water Infrastructure Testing in IL Prisons

Play

Friday, July 15, 2022   

After reports of water contamination in Illinois prisons, groups are calling on the state to conduct a top-down review of the water and sewer systems in the facilities.

The state's Capital Development Board is currently conducting an assessment of prison infrastructure needs, with the goal of identifying structural updates needed for its facilities.

Jennifer Vollen Katz, executive director of the John Howard Association of Illinois (JHA), said the review should include water infrastructure. The JHA is one of six advocacy groups calling to expand the assessment.

"The State of Illinois has not made the resources available to provide ongoing maintenance and upkeep for these facilities," Vollen Katz contended. "Many of them are very old, and haven't had attention paid to their physical plant infrastructure in many, many years."

A recent investigation by The Appeal revealed the water at five Illinois prisons was infected with Legionella bacteria, which can cause Legionnaires' disease, a potentially fatal type of pneumonia. According to the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC), there were more than 27,500 people in the prison system as of the end of March.

Vollen Katz contended, aside from the Legionella contamination, the IDOC has not been transparent about prior water-quality issues. She argued any updates to prisons' drinking water and sewer infrastructure should be subject to public review.

"We don't have a good understanding, and there doesn't seem to be ongoing public inspection, of water systems inside our prisons," Vollen Katz stated.

In prisons across the country, water quality has been a concern for incarcerated people and their advocates, as well as those who work in the facilities. According to the Prison Policy Initiative, one-third of state and federal prisons are built within three miles of a Superfund site, where pollution is serious enough to warrant a federal response.


get more stories like this via email
Nonprofit organizations employed nearly 30,000 Montanans in 2019. (Artur/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

The work of some nonprofit organizations has only increased with the pandemic and the needs that have come from it. An author and expert in the field …


Social Issues

By Lourdes Medrano for Yes! Media. Broadcast version by Mark Richardson for Arizona News Connection, reporting for the YES! Media-Public News Service …

Social Issues

Hispanic Heritage Month began in mid-September and runs through Oct. 15, and a financial institution in Washington state is finding unique ways to …


Fans of solitude say the route density in Labyrinth Canyon can make it difficult to escape the noise of motorized vehicles. (Bureau of Land Management)

Environment

Conservation groups say more needs to be done to protect the natural and cultural resources of Utah's Labyrinth Canyon from off-road vehicles…

Social Issues

Despite being aimed at children in kindergarten through third grade, Florida teachers say what's often referred to as the "Don't Say Gay" law has …

U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., says she plans to call a legislative hearing on the practices of credit reporting agencies. (Kalafoto/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Consumer groups are pressing for legislation to reform the way credit agencies handle errors on credit reports. The calls to amend the Fair Credit …

Environment

A relatively small number of so-called "super emitters" are responsible for 40% of the methane emissions in oil and gas hotspots such as California's …

Social Issues

As "Banned Books Week" comes to a close, Connecticut libraries have been celebrating with great fervor - despite numerous book bans and challenges…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021