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Letter: We have a moral obligation to female inmates, families

Re “ New prison poses city challenges” (Monitor editorial, Oct. 14):

I read with great interest of the Monitor’s concern that the arrival of women inmates’ families may swell our welfare rolls and put even more strain on our police and firefighting services. I, too, worrgy that this load on city services may cause an additional increase in taxes. Relocating these families may keep local tax increases to a minimum but may lessen Concord’s ability to work with the state to keep both local and state taxes from going up. I take exception to the suggestion that the halfway house be moved “somewhere else,” ostensibly to justify our financial concerns, and that the “grim illustration” of our homeless population is being used to bolster the case.

I understand that negotiating for state cost-sharing is a tedious and frustrating process; however, moving the halfway house, and inmates’ families, out of sight and out of mind without exploring the option seems a bit self-serving. The “not in my back yard” approach is not going to help lower our tax obligations, only shift them from local to state. Hiding these people will not make the situation go away, nor does it absolve us of our moral obligation to help these women and their families.

ANNE WELCH

Penacook

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