Local News

Texas Inmates Raise $53,000 For Hurricane Harvey Relief

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Tony Maples Photography


In one month’s time, 6,663 Texas inmates raised more than $53,000 for Hurricane Harvey relief, Texas Department of Criminal Justice spokesman Jason Clark told CNN. Throughout September, the department posted fliers outside commissaries in some of its 104 facilities. Prisoners could choose to donate a dollar or more (of their own money). The average amount given was $8, Clark said. The largest contribution was about $300.

Helping To Rebuild The Lone Star State

Texas Inmates

Photo: Facebook/TexasDepartmentofCriminalJustice

“After Hurricane Harvey struck Texas, people from across the nation came together to help rebuild the Lone Star State. Many donated to organizations who assisted those in need. Offenders incarcerated within TDCJ were no exception. Through the commissary, offenders could choose to donate in one dollar increments to the American Red Cross. From August 31st to September 30th, they gave more than $53,000,” the Texas Department of Criminal Justice said in a statement on Facebook.

Like other states, Texas requires its inmates to work daily during their incarceration. Inmates in federal prisons are also required to work daily during their incarceration. As such, inmates are compensated for their labor. According to the Prison Policy Initiative, and the Federal Bureau of Prisons, inmates in federal prisons earn between 12 cents and 40 cents per hour for their labor. Inmates in federal prisons, working as part of a regimen of job training, receive between 23 cents and $1.15 for their labor.

Help From Many Types of Texans

JJ Watt

Photo: Facebook/WBRCNews

In the wake of Hurricane Harvey, celebrities, professional athletes and even “regular” Texas citizens raised millions of dollars to help aid in storm relief efforts. Houston Texans player JJ Watt’s foundation raised more than $37 million.

“If there is one thing that I have taken away from these last few weeks, it is the reassurance of how much good is out there in our world,” wrote Watt, in a message on his fund’s page at YouCaring.com. “When times are the toughest, humanity stands at its strongest and you have all helped to prove that emphatically.”