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An attorney is apparently behind the move toward jailing people who can't pay their medical bills. For those who dislike the legal profession and think poorly of attorneys, read this article.


https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/county-in-kansas-is-jailing-people-over-unpaid-medical-debt/ar-BBZP8ow?ocid=spartanntp

Karsten, there is a financial incentive to keep people in prison. They aren't "customers", they are forced labor. As I said and posted proof to, prisons are a very profitable money making venture. As I also said, prison is not free. The forced labor prisoners do should easily pay for their imprisonment. The government doesn't pay some prisoners at all. Other's only make like 12 cents/hour. Yet they sell their labor to companies for at least minimum wage. At least. Many times it's much more than minimum wage. What happens to that difference between 12 cents and at least $7 an hour? Does it go for the prisoner's upkeep? If so, then why are the prisoners required to pay for things like toilet paper and "rent" while imprisoned. Yes, prisoners are charged rent for their cell. They are presented with a bill when they leave. Like I said, if you aren't in debt before going to prison you will be when you leave.

"The department responded with a counterclaim or a "cost of incarceration lien" of $54,750 -- the total cost of Barrett's 1,095 day stay in the prison at $50 a day. "

"When another inmate, Dee Taylor, was released after serving a three-year bid in various Florida prisons, he also got a bill for around $55,000
from the Florida Department of Corrections. "

https://money.cnn.com/2015/09/18/news/economy/prison-fees-inmates-debt/index.html

http://archive.boston.com/news/nation/articles/2009/08/16/some_states_charging_inmates_for_stay/
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Is the ACLU political? Yes. They deal with civil rights violations and laws. What does "politics" mean? The art or science of government. I don't think this is "political" in the sense of liberal vs. conservative. It's something that should concern us all since the practice or idea of debtors prisons have been declared unconstitutional. The ACLU may just be looking out for your very own civil rights, Karsten. Whether you believe them much at all or not.

As far as prisons having an interest in filling up the place? You might want to read up on for-profit prisons that are run from a business point of view. What do businesses need? Customers. For profit prisons do well when they have more inmates.
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Karsten, have you researched the ACLU to see what positions it's taken, the Amicus briefs it's filed in lawsuits, the stands it's taken to support various rights we have?
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So, we are going back to the idea of debtors prison. Like that will get them the money faster.
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The prison systems COSTS the government (ie us taxpayers) money, it does not make money. To the degree prison labor is used, it barely defrays the expenses that we as taxpayers pay for prisons. There is no financial incentive to imprison people.

Furthermore, the I don't believe much at all of what the ACLU says. Very politically driven organization.
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https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.cbsnews.com/amp/news/coffeyville-kansas-medical-debt-county-in-rural-kansas-is-jailing-people-over-unpaid-medical-debt/
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Let's not give all the blame to the bill collectors. Let's not ignore the government's role. They are an equal partner in all this. The government makes money off of prisons. The government makes money off of prisoners. The US prison system is a large, multi-billion dollar a year, money making industry. Everyone involved profits hugely from it. Including the government which takes it's cut. Everyone that is, except the prisoners. The government needs people in prison. It profits from the captive workforce. In the US, prisoners are required to work. Many times for no pay. Other times for pennies an hour. Prisoners don't even get room and board for their work. In many places prisoners have to pay for their upkeep in prison. If they can't, they will get billed when they are released. If they weren't in debt before going to prison, they will be when they get out. Prison is not free.

https://www.economist.com/united-states/2017/03/16/prison-labour-is-a-billion-dollar-industry-with-uncertain-returns-for-inmates

https://time.com/3446372/criminal-justice-prisoners-profit/
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It's only clickbait if you want to pretend it doesn't exist and pretend the only problem is someone not showing up for court. It's just not that simple. These people may be missing their court date, but many times, they don't even know they have a court date. It's a sham practice by debt collectors to prey on those who are already beaten down by illness and other issues beyond just medical problems. But it's all OK as long as it happens to others.....or that seems to be the attitude among many.

https://www.aclu.org/issues/smart-justice/mass-incarceration/criminalization-private-debt

"In the cases the ACLU documented, debtors failed to appear at hearings for various reasons, most often because they did not receive notification of the court date or even of the existence of the lawsuit. Some were unable to appear because of work, child care responsibilities, lack of transportation, physical disability, illness, or dementia. We found two cases in which debtors missed hearings because they were terminally ill and died shortly after warrants were issued for their arrest."
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The couple would not have been ordered for court appearances if the unpaid medical bills hadn't existed, and if the creditor had not initiated action.  So the incarceration arises from unpaid medical bills.

Karsten, do you believe that the ACLU would "spread" a story like this?   Are you familiar with the ACLU and the sometimes difficult positions it takes to support civil rights?
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It's not a rumor. It is true. It's well documented.
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the article is clickbait. Educate yourselves. You are never too old to learn. The headline is clickbait. “Jailed over unpaid medical debt” is clickbait to get people up in arms and clearly it’s worked here. The people in the article were jailed because they missed mandatory court appearances. They were’t jailed because they were in medical bill debt.
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Move along, nothing to see here.

This is the kind of rumors like social security being cancelled, etc that tend to float around senior communities.

Its not click bait per se, but these things spread around and are not true.
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This is not clickbait as someone has dismissed it as. This is a real problem. It's not just Kansas. It's all over the United States. Debitor's prison is alive and well in the US. Many people are in jail simply because they couldn't pay back something like a $200 debt. To add insult to injury, in the US jail isn't free. You can be given a bill for the cost of your incarceration at the time of release. If you can't pay that, you go back to jail. People have been in jail for years over small amounts of money. Since that small amount keeps building and building as debt owed the government for jailing you.

Often people don't even know they need to show up in court. They aren't served. The first they hear about it is when they get stopped for a traffic ticket or go through a border. Then they are arrested for failure to appear in court. A person has even been arrested for not showing up in court because she was in a coma.

The key part of this "scam" is that the amount paid in bail should be returned to someone at the end of legal proceedings. In the case of being jailed for debt, the bail is given to the person holding the debt. Not coincidentally, the amount that bail is set at is the same amount as the amount owed.

Here's a report that came out about this a couple of years ago. It's a US problem. Not just a Kansas problem.

https://www.aclu.org/report/pound-flesh-criminalization-private-debt
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So you are still ill or are just struggling to pay your previous bills post recovery and you have to take time from work to appear in court every three months. What a huge waste of court time - seems like that's robbing peter to pay paul, except peter is already broke so the only ones making money on this are the lawyers...
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"What's the matter with Kansas?". Its an excellent book detailing the mindset of Kansans and other conservatives who vote against their self interest.
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Someone who's REALLY spent time in court, whether as a witness, court reporter, attorney, PPO requester, or juror, knows that it can be intimidating.     And some of those folks in trouble for unpaid medical bills might just have been that - intimidated, not to mention ill, and too confused to know how to respond.

Some of the threads on these forums testify to the fact that many people are overwhelmed and aren't capable of responding as folks in dissimilar situations.

I didn't consider this clickbait; if I did, I wouldn't have posted it.
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Clickbait as usual. The people in that article were jailed for failing to appear in court. They missed at least 2 hearings. All they had to do was show up for the hearings and tell the judge they were too poor to pay and they failed to do that.
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