Here’s a feel-good story for Halloween: The Oregonian reports on a program out of the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office where inmate trustees from the county jail give more than 800 hours a month to the local animal shelter. The story credits the inmates with saving the lives of countless animals:
“It helps us tremendously,” says Sgt. Barbara Perry of the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, the interim shelter manager. “We have been able to reduce the amount of euthanasia dramatically because the inmates come and do a lot of the work we would normally do.
“That allows us to dedicate more time to very important programs such as fostering, second chance programs and rescue groups. Those are vital programs that we should be utilizing rather euthanizing because we don’t have space or time.”
The program seems to be a win-win-win: good for the animals, good for the county, and good for the inmates who are involved. It may lead to brighter futures for the inmates as well as the rescued dogs and cats. Duane Parton III (pictured) is taking part in the program while serving more than 200 days for not paying fines on a DUI and misdemeanor charges.
“I love animals,” says Parton, who has learned to give vaccinations and how to detect illness in the rescued canines. He’s recently decided he may take veterinarian classes when he enrolls in community college.
“I am actually glad I am in jail because I get to do this,” says the 26-year-old skateboarder. “How often do you hear that?”
Not often enough. Sounds like a great program to me. Thanks to the Oregonian for reporting on it and offering a hopeful story on second chances. Happy Halloween, everyone!