Prison tightens visitor policies after drug ODs – no kissing, no holding hands under tables

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CONCORD, NH – Operations are “back to normal” at the Northern New Hampshire Correctional Facility in Berlin following a two-day food boycott by inmates in protest of a new prison visitation policy that restricts things like kissing and holding hands.

On Tuesday when the new visiting policy was implemented, inmates in some housing units at the Northern New Hampshire Correctional Facility in Berlin protested by participating in a food boycott.  Some of the inmates verbally expressed their dissatisfaction with the changes, according to a news release.

Holding hands on top of tables is allowed.
Holding hands on top of tables is allowed.

For the safety of the institution and the public the inmates were confined to their housing units for the remainder of Tuesday and Wednesday while Correctional Staff monitored and managed this situation in accordance with  security and disciplinary policies.

No one was hurt and there was no damage to the building or property.

Commissioner William Wrenn said that if inmates refuse to comply with the updated policies, he is prepared to “take whatever additional steps are necessary” to prevent the infiltration of drugs into the state prison.

Operations returned to normal today February 2, 2017.

The situation was managed in “an appropriate and professional manner,” according to an announcement issued by the prison, which read in part:

“It is not unusual for inmates to express themselves when there is a change in policy and procedures.  Our staff are trained to respond to an array of incidents or events when they occur in our facilities and we want to commend them on their excellent work of managing the situation.”

Below is the full memo released to the public about the prison visiting room policy change that became effective on January 31, 2017, including restrictions which are punishable .

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