North Carolina Department of Correction news release

Inmate Labor Pays $575,000 into Crime Victims Fund

JANUARY 21, 1998

Raleigh - Prisoners in North Carolina are working to pay back innocent victims of crime. This month, the labor of these prisoners allowed North Carolina Correction Enterprises to pay $575,401 into the state’s Crime Victims Compensation Fund.

Thanks to a law passed during the special legislative session on crime called by Governor Hunt in 1994, North Carolina Correction Enterprises now pays five percent of annual profits from state prison industry into the fund for crime victims.

"We require prisoners to work and use that labor to pay back crime victims and communities," Correction Secretary Mack Jarvis said. "Our prison work programs serve as a form of restitution."

Correction Enterprises paid $93,773 into the victims’s fund in 1997 and $293,322 in 1996.

The Crime Victims Compensation Fund, a part of the North Carolina Department of Crime Control and Public Safety, reimburses citizens who suffer medical expenses and lost wages as a result of a crime committed in North Carolina.

"The money goes to innocent victims of crimes," said Gary B. Eichelberger, Director of the Division of Victim and Justice Services. "We pay up to $20,000 to help with medical bills, out-of-pocket expenses, work loss and another $3,500 is paid in cases of homicide."

More than 2,100 prisoners work in 37 Correction Enterprise operations. Correction Enterprises helps train prisoners who work on the state prison farm, make highway and street signs, produce highway paint and car license tags, operate laundries and make clothing and metal products needed in prison operations.

Correction Enterprises returns $940,000 dollars back to the state every year and pays the wages of all employed inmates as well as paying into the crime victims’ fund.