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Local Coalition Demands Transparency on New Jail Plans

Daj'za Demmings speaks to a crowd outside a government building in downtown Dayton. She is a member of the Montgomery County Jail Coalition, and they are demanding the county release plans for it's new, bigger jail.
Mawa Iqbal
/
WYSO
Daj'za Demmings, member of the Montgomery County Jail Coalition, speaks at a press conference in downtown Dayton on June 2. The coalition is demanding more transparency from the county on their new jail construction project.

A community group called The Montgomery County Jail Coalition is demanding county commissioners to publicly release their plans for a new jail.

The county is seeking $40 million to build a new jail that will house more people. The larger facility will provide specialty beds for inmates with substance abuse and mental health issues.

At a press conference June 2, the Montgomery County Jail Coalition said they have been requesting information on these plans for the past year. They were told that there were no plans and no information available.

The coalition says people with mental health issues need rehabilitation outside of the prison system. Former inmate Hakeem says being incarcerated took a toll on his mental health.

“For you to be locked down for 23 hours with only one hour of time, a few minutes to come out...It takes you to a place that you hate to be in,” Hakeem said. "It does nothing for recidivism, or recovery."

The coalition is also pushing the county and the sheriff to hold public hearings on their plans.