In 2014, a Michigan inmate sued Aramark for serving rotten food, claiming “cruel and unusual punishment.” This isn’t an isolated case; in recent years cases have been filed in several states relating to inmates’ meals, with a case in Vermont even being heard by the state Supreme Court. Have you ever thought about what we are feeding our prisoners?
The issues in the above video might be extreme, but every single prisoner in America has to eventually come to terms with the fact that while they are incarcerated their food choices are extremely limited. You eat what you are served.
Therefore, for men returning from long-term sentences it can be difficult to adjust to food “on the outside.” I’m sure that many returning citizens are grateful just to get their hands on a Big Mac and fries, but learning how to shop, prepare meals, and choose healthy options can be complicated and overwhelming. Imagine how difficult it would be for you to prepare a simple baked casserole if you didn’t know how to use proper measurements, had trouble reading, or weren’t sure how how to tell the difference between thyme and tarragon. Imagine that you have been eating cafeteria food for the past decade, and now you are told that you are responsible for choosing and preparing all of your meals. At Redemption Housing, we hope to come by our residents to provide them with the life skills they need to be successful long-term. Cooking is one of these skills, which is why we will have volunteers join us regularly to cook and eat with our residents. If you are interested in being involved in teaching nutrition or simply sharing a meal, fill out our volunteer application today!