Suffredin- Changing County Government  
 

Accountability
Forest Preserves
Public Safety
Cook County Budget
Forest Pres. Budget
Property Tax Appeal
Health & Hospitals
Land Bank Authority
Policy Resolutions

 

   
 
   
   
 
   
     
  Office phone numbers:  
   
 
 

Search current and proposed Cook County Legislation in Larry's exclusive legislative library.

   
 

The Cook County Code of Ordinances are the current laws of Cook County.

   
  The Cook County Forest Preserve District maintains over 70 miles of bicycle trails.
   
     
     
     



After cold turkey, jail serves sweets

Thursday, August 18, 2005
Chicago Sun-Times
by FRANK MAIN Crime Reporter

They're not getting nicotine gum, nicotine patches or any of those other aids that recovering smokers can find in their drugstores.

Inmates in the Cook County Jail, who went cold turkey Aug. 1, when a smoking ban was imposed, are being given only one remedy to soothe their frazzled nerves: candy.

Hard candies -- like those red-and-white peppermints that sit next to restaurant cash registers -- are served with all three daily meals, said Bill Cunningham, a spokesman for Cook County Sheriff Michael Sheahan, who runs the jail.

"It's something to keep their hands and mouths occupied," Cunningham said. "It does help people who are struggling to quit smoking, according to our medical staff."

The ban on tobacco products and matches, which the sheriff launched to improve the health of the jail's nearly 10,000 inmates, has not led to any violent uprisings or fights, as some people predicted, Cunningham said.

"Overall, it has been a pretty positive experience," he said.

A few inmates have been sent to the jail's Cermak Hospital for treatment of symptoms related to tobacco withdrawal. But withdrawal symptoms are not new to the jail: Heroin and alcohol addiction is a major problem among inmates.

Cunningham said sales of products at the jail's commissary seem to have fallen since the smoking ban. There have been rumors that some inmates have been encouraging others to boycott the commissary in a protest of the ban, he said.

Drug-sniffers at the door

A handful of inmates have been caught with contraband tobacco or matches, Cunningham said. But no guards, who also are banned from smoking, have been nabbed with the banned materials, he said.

To combat smuggling, Sheahan is installing drug detection equipment at all of the jail's entrance points. The machines, bought with nearly $1.1 million in asset forfeiture funds, can detect even small amounts of narcotics or tobacco. Next week, officials will start using one of the machines in a pilot program.

"It's important to pick the right setting for the machines," Cunningham said.

Overly sensitive machines can cause problems. At one federal prison, an ion scanner found cocaine on a U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agent, but an investigation concluded he had traces of the drug on his hand because it had been on the steering wheel of a rental car he was driving, Cunningham said.



Recent Headlines

Cook County loses billions in tax dollars to collar counties
Friday, April 18, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Recorder blasted for hiring; says ethics law doesn't apply to her
Thursday, April 17, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Friends and family hiring plan
Thursday, April 17, 2014
Chicago Tribune

Earth Day Approaching, President Preckwinkle Highlights Cook County’s Sustainability Accomplishments and Programs
Thursday, April 17, 2014
Special to suffredin.org

Two former Board of Review employees get prison time
Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

County announces 2013 No Cash Bid Program results
Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Special to suffredin.org

Orr: TIF reform worth $44M annually at no cost to taxpayers
Tuesday, April 15, 2014
Special to suffredin.org

Property tax relief granted because of O'Hare noise
Monday, April 14, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

What is Cook County Health's interim thinking?
Monday, April 14, 2014
Crain's Chicago Business

New Metra policy will log all calls intended to influence hiring
Saturday, April 12, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Metra moves to clean up its mess, but lots more needed
Friday, April 11, 2014
Crain's Chicago Business

That scandal at Metra? Nothing to it
Friday, April 11, 2014
Chicago Tribune

President Preckwinkle plans pension cuts
Thursday, April 10, 2014
Chicago Tribune

Getting Metra on the right track
Thursday, April 10, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County's Alvarez says most in Cook Jail have violent pasts
Wednesday, April 09, 2014
WBEZ

Cook County passes suburban puppy mill ban
Wednesday, April 09, 2014
Chicago Tribune

Cook Co. to settle sex harassment suit involving highway workers
Wednesday, April 09, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Alvarez complains caseload 'Staggering' and funding shrinking
Wednesday, April 09, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Ex-prosecutor questions Devine's Death Row decision
Tuesday, April 08, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

After giving to Dorothy Brown's campaign, staffers get promotions
Tuesday, April 08, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

all news items

Paid for by Larry Suffredin and not at taxpayer expense. A Haymarket Production.
^ TOP