Suffredin- For a Better Cook County  
 

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

 

   
 
   
   
 
   
     
  Office phone numbers:  
   
 
 

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

   
 

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

   
  Cook County Hospital fills more outpatient prescriptions every day than are filled at 26 Walgreen's drug store combined.
   
     
     
     



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

Woman, 19, arrested after escaping police custody at Cook County courthouse
Sunday, December 09, 2018
WLS ABC Chicago 7

Here's an exciting prospect: A boring assessor's office
Saturday, December 08, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

Sheriff starts unique inmate program to combat Chicago's gun epidemic
Thursday, December 06, 2018
RTV 6 Indianapolis

Staff feud at tax appeals board turns nasty
Wednesday, December 05, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

Cook County Tax Bills Posted Online Three Months Early
Wednesday, December 05, 2018
CBS Chicago

County Board makes it easier to choose Preckwinkle successor
Tuesday, December 04, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

New Cook County assessor vows end to favoritism as he takes office
Monday, December 03, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

New Cook County Board members sworn in Monday
Monday, December 03, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County referendums: 'Yes' to everything
Wednesday, November 28, 2018
Chicago City Wire

Glenview to discuss Cook County minimum wage, paid sick leave ordinances in December
Tuesday, November 27, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Wilmette reverses course, fully adopts both county minimum wage and sick time rules
Tuesday, November 27, 2018
Chicago Tribune

What Pritzker's minimum wage increase plan could mean for the suburbs
Monday, November 26, 2018
Daily Herald

Cook County sheriff’s vehicle struck during ISP pursuit on I-294
Sunday, November 25, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County 'Tails' program offers redemption for inmates, dogs
Thursday, November 22, 2018
Daily Herald

Cook County correctional officer owns bar where security guard Jemel Roberson shot by cop, officials say
Wednesday, November 21, 2018
Chicago Tribune

More than 2 months after sisters were killed in crash with Cook County sheriff's officer, family still waits for answers
Wednesday, November 21, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Jail guard’s retaliation suit can proceed
Monday, November 19, 2018
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Northbrook will revisit Cook County minimum wage ordinance in May
Sunday, November 18, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Suffredin: County to seek 'safeguards' for golf course road
Friday, November 16, 2018
Evanston NOW

She's been waiting 15 months for her rape kit to be processed. A new proposal to track evidence aims to change that.
Wednesday, November 14, 2018
Chicago Tribune

all news items

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