The Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office and Jacksonville State University Social Work program are beginning a program to assess inmates for societal needs such as mental health, substance abuse treatment, and other factors that could help return the accused to a productive member of the community.
The partnership with JSU includes a graduate student of the Social Worker program that will work at the county jail conducting personal assessments of inmates to determine methods of treatment instead of just using the jail as a warehouse of inmates.
The Calhoun County Jail average population is approximately 550 inmates with a capacity of approximately 400. The county jail is a 33 year old facility that is burdened with too many inmates and too little staff.
These assessments with involve the 500-800 arrestees brought into the jail every month. Calhoun County Sheriff Matthew Wade said that they are trying to discover ways to help these individuals become productive members of society.
Sheriff Wade said he feels this method is a good start for a very reasonable cost as the graduate students will receive a small stipend for the semester and gain valuable real life experience in their field of study. All the while, as a team helping Calhoun County become a safer and better place.