A bill in Sacramento, California is being moved forward through the Senate that will require that prison officials hand out cond0ms to inmates. The state Assembly has already passed the bill which was previously pushed back by Governor Jerry Brown.
The current law that criminalizes any s*xual acts between prisoners will not change. It will however help against the spread of communicable disease both inside the prison and outside of the prison. When prisoners are released they can spread any disease that they may have contracted while incarcerated.
The Senate Public Safety Committee passed the bill with a 5-1 vote on Tuesday. The next channel that it needs to pass through is the Senate Appropriations Committee which will hear the issue next. People that are opposed to this bill are worried that the prisoners will use the cond0ms for things other than their intended use. They are worried that the prophylactics will be used to store drugs or other illegal substances that may be smuggled in by visitors. Supporters of the bill feel very differently about the bill. They are hoping that if it passes it will cut down significantly on the number of communicable diseases that are diagnosed within the prison system.
It is 8 to 10 times more likely for a prisoner to contract the AIDS/HIV virus while incarcerated than when they are out on the street. It is estimated that every year the state will spend $24,000 for every prisoner that gets HIV or AIDS. They also estimate that the new cond0m initiative will cost roughly $1.39 per prisoner. Michael Weinstein who is an AIDS activist says that even though they are incarcerated they are still people who deserve protection no matter what.