Letters from the week of March 19

Feature: “Strategos,” March 12

Armed With Knowledge

Peter Rugg’s article on school-shooter training was great. Thank you for the fair and informative view of the program, and for helping educate Missourians on their homeland security program.

Paul Fennewald

Homeland Security Coordinator, Missouri 

Office of Homeland Security, Jefferson City

Feature: “Jail Break,” March 5

A Jail That Helped

Around this time last year, I did a short stint at the Municipal Correctional Institution. I agree that it’s run-down and needs to be fixed, but the help I found there brought me to a place where I don’t believe I would be if I hadn’t gone there. I was only in for minor charges and issues with some tickets, and I knew that I would only be there for a little while (12 days to be exact). I was, like many women, unfortunate, with no money and couldn’t bond myself out, so I was stuck. Because it was the only time I had been in a jail that long, I found the programs to be comforting. I didn’t realize that I had a drug and alcohol problem until I visited the Me-First Program, and the Anger Management class was helpful in coping with the stress of being in jail.

I stumbled upon Carolyn Szczepanski’s article by accident because I was trying to see if there were any opportunities to volunteer at MCI. I figured that I got so much help there that I wanted to be able to help out some women with the same problems. Now I found out that MCI is closing. I am not unfamiliar with the judicial system and being in jail. I have been to the county jail (again, for traffic junk), and county jails do not offer the same programs or help to inmates while they sit there and wait to be sentenced and sent to the Department of Corrections. It’s unfortunate that MCI is closing, and I hope that they can help women and men with the programs elsewhere.

Cynthia Spencer, Riverside

Click here to write a letter to the editor.