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Warden Survey Released

On December 21, 1994, Illinois US senator Paul Simon (D) released a survey he had conducted of 157 prison wardens across the country. Simon told a news conference he was releasing the survey because it was time for a "reality check" as congress gears up for yet another crime bill.

Asked "Do you think most elected officials are offering effective solutions to crime?" 85% of the wardens answered "no." Only 10% answered "yes." Two thirds of the wardens surveyed stated that prison space could be better used by imposing shorter sentences on non-violent offenders to make room for those convicted of violent crimes. They also stated there were too many minor drug offenders behind bars.

At the news conference former director of the federal prison system Michael Quinlain stated that the combination of a massively growing prison population combined with the newly popular removal of privileges such as weights, televisions and recreation items could prove deadly.  He said "I am worried there is going to be a disaster in our prisons. We will not be able to manage them effectively."

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