Letters from Kevin Walsh in the Arizona State Prison

The Commissary Price List
It's like a Circle K in the prison

 

2 November 2005

Dear Ganish,

Enclosed is our prison commissary list. We are allowed to order from it once per week. In general more items are available and at far more reasonable prices than from the Maricopa County Jail commissary list. In September the commissary was transferred to a private company called Keefe. Prior to that the state was responsible for it.

Thank you for the information about your latest lawsuit. I hope you win. Thank you for the news updates. I particularly enjoyed Jasonís account of life in New Zealand. Why are you angry with Jason?

At first it was almost impossible for me to do that job as a shower sanitizer, but now it has become easier to convince the guards to let me out, the disinfectant is available, and I have a scouring pad.

I am expecting a visit from my mother on Sunday, and I have been able to telephone her about twice a week.

Things have been relatively calm her of late, with no fights or disturbances. There have been no further lotteries or shakedowns.

Yours,

Kevin


Here is the price list from the prison commissary Kevin sent me. At the top it used to say "Level 4" but I clipped it to save disk space. It seems there are different commissary lists for different levels of security. Inmates are housed at 5 security levels 1 thru 5. Level 5 are the most dangerous inmates and 1 are the least dangers inmates. Myself I would classify Kevin as the least dangerous level but because he tried to kill himself and they accused him of threatening a cop he is classified as a level 4 which is the almost the most dangerous level.

When you look at these prices remember that the prisoners are slaves and only make 5¢ to 50¢ per hour. At those slave wages it takes 11 hours of work at the 5¢ wage to buy a 20 oz bottle of coke which the Arizona State prison sells to the inmates for 55¢ a bottle.

 

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