Battle Escalates Over Proposed San Mateo County Jail
Opponents of building a new San Mateo County jail are meeting Saturday in East Palo Alto to figure out how to block construction. They say the $160 million project will take funds from much needed social services.
“I question whether or not, in one of the richest parts of the world, should we focus on building a jail rather than using other strategies to process people where we reduce crime,” says Dorsey Nunn, Executive Director of Legal Services for Prisoners with Children.
But County Sheriff Greg Munks says the jail system needs the space.
“What we’re trying to do isn’t to just build capacity so we can lock up more people,” he says. “What we’re trying to do is to relieve overcrowding and improve our outcomes.”
Munks says the closure of older facilities and the arrival of state prisoners under realignment have made overcrowding worse.