Minnesota Department of Corrections

Recent Articles

End Minnesota’s high prison phone rates


By Dr. Artika R. Tyner

Guest Commentator


In Minnesota, 15,000 children are losing contact with a mother or father in prison due to the extremely high cost of prison phone calls. The cost for one 15-minute collect phone call from a prison can cost over $17. The high cost of these phone calls is not a product of the cost of service, but rather based upon the commissions received by prisons when they enter into service contracts with phone service providers. The Community Justice Project at the University of St. Thomas School of Law along with many Prison Phone Justice Supporters are organizing to ban these commissions and cap the cost of prison phone calls. Continue Reading →

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Concentration of Level 3 sex offenders on North Side ‘dumping ground’ opposed




By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer


According to the Minnesota Department of Corrections’ (DOC) latest reporting, there are 1,428 total sex offenders in the state. Of the 134 registered Level 3 Sex Offenders (L3SOs) in Minneapolis, 37 percent live in the 55411 and 55412 ZIP codes, which are located on the city’s North Side. Residents objected to this concentration at a June 25 community meeting at North Regional Library. A DOC spokesperson told the MSR last week that the State updates the Level 3 registered list twice a year — January 1 and July 1. “[The registered list is] always changing, constantly evolving. Continue Reading →

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‘Hurt people hurt people’ — healing Black men’s pain


By Dwight Hobbes

Contributing Writer


Samuel Simmons. Say that name at a gathering of psychologists, social workers or both and you will catch someone’s ear. This is because Simmons, a veteran professional with a strong track record for successful counseling, is well known for his singular approach to mental and emotional health. He forgoes the field’s usual penchant for catchphrases and polysyllabic jargon to speak in plain language about how to solve complicated problems with simple common sense. “If the client can’t understand what you’re saying,” Simmons notes, “you can’t really do him or her much good.”

At a hulking, fairly fit 6’4”, Simmons puts you in mind of, say, Forrest Whitaker, an affable bear of a man who sports a ready smile, extends a hearty handshake, and offers a friendly word. Continue Reading →

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‘Renaissance man’ takes setbacks in stride



Sean G. Phillips is the sort of individual who’s so interesting someone should write an article about him. To start with, Phillips has more things going for him than a little bit. From February 2008 until June of last year, he was program manager/case advocate for the Family Strengthening Project at the Council on Crime and Justice in Minneapolis. It was singled out as one of the best organizations in the field of empowering incarcerated men to rejoin society and occupy a constructive place in their families. He served as point person with Minnesota Department of Corrections, did report and grant writing, and created and cultivated partnerships with community-based organizations to provide family services. Continue Reading →

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