Skip to comments.Bus route now swings by Richland [County, SC] jail
Posted on 01/21/2014 9:19:21 AM PST by Gamecock
A route on the Midlands bus system has been extended to the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center, picking up at the jail a few times a day.
City and county leaders have struggled to find a solution for transporting released detainees. While bus leaders say it is not intended to shuttle freed detainees, the detainees those released on bond or released after serving jail time still have the option to get on board alongside other passengers.
The stop on Route 4 was added about five months ago.
Bob Schneider, executive director of The COMET the new name of the Central Midlands Regional Transit Authority said the expanded route helps provide transportation for those who work at Alvin S. Glenn, which he said is a huge employment center.
The route is not a detainee shuttle, said Columbia City Councilman Brian DeQuincey Newman, who is chairman of the transit board. He called it a pilot stop.
Newman said there was no plan in creating a specific bus line for people released from the detention center.
Im not interested in doing that, plain and simple, Newman said.
During the day, released detainees who do not have a ride from the detention center are dropped off at the main bus terminal at Sumter and Laurel streets, said Richland County Councilman Seth Rose.
Ive been pushing hard to put something else in place, said Rose, who represents Council District 5, a large portion of which is the downtown area.
But he does not think the best solution would be the bus system.
With the passage of the penny sales tax, I dont want to compromise the perception of (the transit system), he said.
He said a voucher system with a private shuttle could be a solution.
Detainees released after the end of the business day are taken directly to the citys emergency winter shelter operated by Christ Central Ministries near the city water plant on the Columbia Canal. The Columbia Police Department originally was planning to drop them off at the departments headquarters in the Vista, but nearby business owners voiced concern.
Previously, released detainees were dropped off after hours at the bus terminal at Sumter and Laurel streets, but people complained that they were then free to roam around the city late at night.
However, during the day, released prisoners can ride the bus that picks up at the detention center. Riding costs $1.50, Schneider said.
Theyre just like everyone else, he said. Its the same as if they were housed in a downtown facility and they got out on Main Street.
However, the route does not line up with court schedules, Schneider said.
Were not prisoner transport, he said.
He said there are no special programs or discount passes for released detainees and there has not been any discussion for such plans.
Its just a route like it would be for anyone else, he said.
He said the transit system plans to market to other major employers, especially city, county and state government.
said the expanded route helps provide transportation for those who work at Alvin S. Glenn, which he said is a huge employment center.
‘Cause people who work at jail want to ride the same buss as those who were just released.
The bus I used to ride did something funny. When it’s running southbound, it goes through the airport, then out to the Del Valle jail, then back to the airport, then north to the rest of the route.
I never understood that. Why would people, just leaving the jail, have any need to go to the airport? Maybe it’s just to get people that want to leave the airport on the northbound bus. That’s all I can think of.
If someone is released, they can ride the bus, big friggin deal!!!
Agreed. I struggle finding the big deal here. Are they free to enter society or not? What exactly is a “released detainee”?
They may be many things, but at the released moment in their lives, they are not a detainee.
I had to ride a bus from Houston to Dallas once, years ago. One of the first stops was in Huntsville, by the state prison. About 30 former inmates boarded my bus. It was easy to tell who they were because they were all dressed the same. Most went at least as far as Dallas. During the 3 hours or so of the ride, we had exactly zero problem with any of them. They were happy to be free, and the passengers didn’t pay them too much attention, since they weren’t bothering anyone. One guy sat across from me, and he was hilarious. He was very nice to everyone around him.
Once someone is released, we need to treat them as humans, up until they give up that right. Johnny Cash spent some time in jail and he turned out pretty decent. :)
yeah. like what could possibly go wrong?
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