Thursday, September 24, 2009

A garden grows at Rikers

From the Daily News:

At Rikers Island, where 14,000 inmates live, the planting gets underway in the spring and cycles through the summer into the fall. The gardens yield an impressive assortment of fresh produce, most of which is donated to City Harvest. In fact, this year the agency trucked away 18,000 pounds of fresh vegetables, all of which will be go to soup kitchens and food pantries.

The program at the jail, officially known as the farm and horticulture program, is directed by Carrolle Banfield. She’s in charge of securing the plots of land, taking patches wherever she can find them. She then arranges for the soil to be turned over with a tractor, and supervises the inmates as they work. At any given time, about 15 inmates who are considered low-risk work in the program. The compost, Banfield notes, is made from recyclable garbage at Rikers, and no artificial pesticides are used.


Anonymous said...

Oh yes... this is good training for the inmates, when they are released from Rikers they can get a job on a farm. In Queens? Or is it hopefull that they move away from Queens, with their vast knowledge of farming, to Iowa?

Anonymous said...

Most of Rikers are people who are awaiting trial and are not proven guilty yet, so that comment is unfair.

Anonymous said...

I am not going to knock the inmates on this one. They seem to be doing something constructive and beneficial to society, so I think it is fair to give credit where credit is due. I wish them luck in theie endeavors, and I truly hope the experience helps to set them in the right direction.

Anonymous said...

Now wouldn't Claire and Wellington look pretty shackled together ("The Defiant Ones") tending a losers' garden here

Stripes ARE coming back into fashion...all the rage now!

Your dirty Willets Point land theft scheme ain't gonna two!

Here comes the prison tailor now just waiting to take your measurements.

Did you think that two prominent partners like yourselves were going to be given off the rack stripes?

Nonsense...custom made for you birds!

It's the least that we can do.

-Joe said...

Yes I noticed the orange jumpsuits are gone and strips are back !
If you have I boat you can motor over and see these guys working on graves & ground keep. They also grow tree saplings on Hart Island.
Last year I had these 2 crazy girls on the boat. They took the bikinis off and did this cheer thing for them.

BTW they dont actually dig graves on hart Island, they bulldoze this big "wedge" shaped cut in the ground and backup a flatbed of 30 or so wooden caskets into it once a week. They then mark the section with with a numbered stone.
The whole process takes less then 45 minutes

Anonymous said...

The article states 14,000 inmate live on Rikers. If you are convicted of a crime that require you to spend more than several years in jail, you stay at Rikers until you are transferred to a State or Federal Correctional .
This is a project for inmates - not people who cant make bail