Secretary John Wetzel announced today that the Department of Corrections (DOC) will make the State Correctional Institution (SCI) at Graterford a tobacco-free facility in anticipation of the transition to the new SCI Phoenix later this year on the same property.
“Tobacco-free correctional facilities promote a healthier environment, which benefits both employees and inmates and increases facility safety,” said Wetzel. “We chose to make this transition prior to the move of employees and inmates from SCI Graterford to SCI Phoenix later this year to ensure that SCI Phoenix will never have tobacco inside that facility.”
As of April 1, 2018, tobacco products no longer will be permitted inside the secure perimeter of SCI Graterford. Any tobacco products discovered or used inside the prison after April 1 by inmates or staff will be considered contraband. The DOC identifies tobacco products as cigarettes, cigars, tobacco (smoking and smokeless), tobacco substitutes, lighters, pipes, pipe cleaners, filters, rolling papers, roller aprons and rollers.
Until March 1, 2018, inmates may continue to purchase tobacco products from the commissary, and employees and inmates may continue to use such products in designated smoking areas until April 1.
Both inmates and employees will be permitted to use DOC-approved disposable/non-refillable e-cigarettes in designated smoking areas.
Inmates will be provided with smoking cessation programs, educational materials and support services to assist them with this transition. Inmates, working with the prison’s medical department, may purchase nicotine replacement therapy patches through an approved outside vendor.
Educational materials and resources for smoking cessation are available to employees through the State Employee Assistance Program and the Pennsylvania Employee Benefit Trust Fund.
SCIs Chester and Pine Grove are already tobacco-free institutions because of their special missions. Chester provides drug and alcohol treatment programming and Pine Grove houses young adult offenders.
I can not believe this is going to turn out well, the majority of Graterfords inmates are lifers, or were when I was there. Smoking keeps inmates calm and gives them something to do. I can not see this going over well.
What is insanity, Pennlive.com posted this picture of the inside of Graterford, in this picture you can see my old cell. Talk about instant PTSD