Chairwoman Creem, Chairman O’Flaherty and members of the Committee, I would like to offer testimony in support of my bill H. 1483, An Act Relative to the Establishment of a Women’s Correctional Facility in Middlesex County.
Currently, MCI Framingham, a state prison, is the only correctional facility in the Commonwealth that houses women in a secure setting. The South Middlesex Correctional Facility also houses women but it is a pre-release facility. As a result, all incarcerated women who reside in Middlesex Counter are sent to MCI Framingham, even if the state prison is not the most appropriate placement for them. This includes women who are subject to pre-trial incarceration.
To remedy this unfortunate situation, H. 1483 would require that a women’s correctional facility be established in Middlesex County. The facility would be administered by the Middlesex County Sheriff’s office. This bill would relieve the current overcrowding of female prisoners at MCI Framingham. Additionally, a correctional facility in Middlesex County would help women maintain ties with family members, and would lessen the distance that their attorneys currently have to travel.
Thank you for your consideration of this important matter. I strongly encourage the Committee to adopt a favorable report for H. 1483 as expeditiously as possible.