Letter: Rehabilitation program should be required

To the editor,

Overcrowding in prisons has become a serious issue not only in the state of Connecticut, but nationwide. In Connecticut specifically, about 79 percent of those incarcerated have a drug/substance abuse charge on their record. Due to this increasing percentage, I came to the conclusion that whatever current rehabilitation programs offered either aren’t working or aren’t being used to their fullest potential. My idea is that if rehabilitation is required in a sentencing for drug charges in Connecticut, the percentage of offenders would go down.

According to The Dunes, East Hampton (a rehabilitation facility), most drug overdoses in Connecticut occur in Hartford, New Haven, and Danbury, with heroin traveling straight through Interstate 95.

Connecticut has a population of roughly 3.4 million people, with a state prison population of about 18,700 and an additional 50,000 people on probation. There are about eight correctional facilities in Connecticut that offer an inpatient rehabilitation program, and each program is run by trained professionals. I believe these programs would benefit a greater amount of people and lower the incarceration rate if offenders are required to complete these programs.

Rachel Garcia

Naugatuck