Moms support closure of Illinois supermax prison

April 4, 2012

Associated Press

A group critical of the treatment of prisoners at Tamms Correctional Center plans to march in support of Gov. Pat Quinn's proposal to close the southern Illinois supermax prison.

Organizers say mothers of prisoners will be among the marchers in Wednesday's demonstration in Chicago. They say the issue is "human dignity, not jobs."

Human rights advocates have long criticized the prison as inhumane for keeping prisoners confined to their cells 23 hours a day.

Quinn's budget would close 14 state facilities, including Tamms, to save money. The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees is fighting the Tamms closure.

An economic impact statement says closing Tamms would mean 295 state employee layoffs — and a ripple effect of 43 jobs lost in the community.