Jesse Bailey


There are two types of employment in prison. One is to work for the state and the other is for Correctional Industries.

Each one has its perks and down falls, just like most jobs. Also, both have restrictions on who can be employed in those jobs.

The state jobs are all over the facility. In the unit some of these jobs are, bathroom porters, dayroom porters, resource room worker and gardeners to name a few.

There are other jobs that are in other buildings like, medical, education and in the kitchen.

Then you have jobs that are beyond what we call the HUB. This is like another part of the facility that is beyond the realms of general population.

An inmate needs special clearance to go through the hub to this part of the facility. Most inmate’s don’t meet the specific criteria to even apply for HUB jobs.

The Hub is a central point of entry where we get scanned in and out when we go through. There is a metal detector and a thorough pat search. At random they could take you to a back room and strip search you.

The state jobs are capped at $55 a month. The hourly rate of pay starts at .32 and tops out at .42 That’s the maximum a person can earn an hour.

You’ll get two raises from .32 to .38 and from .38 to .42. Those raises are every 3 months. A person will never earn more than $55 a month total. Even if they work those hours and earn more, it just turns into free work hours.

CI jobs have no monthly cap. Also the hourly rate of pay is higher. Its starts out at .65 and tops out at $1.70 an hour. Each month a .5 raise is given to you just for being employed at CI.

There are 3 stages or levels of pay. Level 1 is starting pay of .60. At Level 2 you have reached .90. At level 3 you have reached $1.40. At level 4 you have reached $1.70. Most inmates never reach the $1.70 pay of a level 4. There just are not that many to be had. But everyone will reach level 3 pay.

At each level CI has certain classes a person has to take to be qualified to move past to the next level of pay. Its takes 3 differnt clases to reach Level 3. Each class is twice a week for 6 weeks.

There is a special class that an inmate must take and pass to qualify to became a level 4. Some inmates don’t pass the class and can’t be promoted. It does happen.

Level 4 positions are reserved for the leads for that specific area of the factory. For instance my area is metal fabrication and productions. There are 2 Level 4’s over seeing up to 14 other inmates in my section. I am one of those leads.

The level 4’s are responsible for all of the work and quality of work that comes out of that section. Or any problems that may arise.

There is a lenght of time an inmate is aloud to work in CI. That time limit is 7 years. After 7 years your time is up and CI will lay you off. Basicly fire you.

This happens so inmates don’t get too comfortable in positions around the facility.

To be employed back in CI you must wait 1 year. Then you can reapply again and get on the list to be interviewed.

There is also time limits for state jobs. Its a little shorter. Its only 4 years. After that 4 years inmates must wait 1 year before reapplying for a state job again.

In these times you get laid off you are without work or any income.

However if you are qualified to go behind the hub you can continue to work by applying for a CI job. That goes for Switching from CI to a state job too.

There are some state jobs behind the hub also. However they top out at $55 monthly too. Those jobs are maintenance crew, paint crew, plumbers crew and lawn & garden’s. Basicly all the crews that maintain Stafford Creek.

The hours that inmates work beyond the HUB are from 7:30am to 3pm. The day ends at 3pm because the facility has a head count everyday at 4pm. We all have to be back in our cells at that time.

After clocking in between 7:30 am and 7:50am, and then back out at 3pm I get around 6 1/2 hours a day. Give or take 20 minutes.

However there are times of the year that CI extends these times for production reasons. That time is extended to 8pm.

We are counted out in the factory during this count time. We get around 12 hours a day when this happens.

Its a big deal when overtime happens. A lot of inmates love it.They get fairly good pay checks depending on what percentage the state takes from your pay.

Some people get 30% taken out. Some get 50% cut. And a lot of people get 75% cut out. It all depends on if you owe the state money or child support. Most people are at the 50% cut. Few are at 30%. The ones at the 70% cut don’t usually work CI because they just don’t make much. Its all taken.

Those percentages pay back the debt inmates acquired while getting and being incarcerated. Things like thier legal financial obligations, restitution, hospital bills or any other debt racked up in their crime.

As your debts get paid off those % values go down. A person will always have 30% taken. It never gets lower than that. That’s just a standard.

The state jobs don’t have that cut. Its just $55 strait across. So the 75%’ers usually stick with the state jobs, not CI. Inmates usually take home $50 to $52 after the 5% or so cut the state gets.

However inmates with child support still get taxed on their check.Those people are taxed all the way down to $25 a month.

When overtime starts people work like this for months. Sometimes up to 8 months at 12 hours a day. Its the best chance to make money, and pay debts off.

Only problem I have with it is when people start to get burned out they don’t stop and take a break. They keep pushing, and usually blow up on someone who doesn’t deserve it. And if that just so happens to be that one person who doesn’t take it, a fight could break out.

In the mornings movement starts at 7am. That’s when the dayrooms open and the facility baicly wakes up. 7am is when we are aloud to come out of our cell for the first time of the day. 7:30am is when we are in line to go through the HUB and start work.

9 pm is when we lockdown for the night and the facility baicly goes to sleep.

All in all there’s not much time for anything else. But that’s the way things go.

If you have any questions or comments that you want to ask or share with me. Feel free to contact me at

Jesse Bailey
DOC #879476

Categories: Jesse Bailey, prison jobs

1 reply »

  1. Don’t expect wages to get much better, Jesse. The 13th Amendment to the Constitution declared that “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”


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