12 News Investigates: MDOC smoking policy

12 News Investigates

JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – Illegal tobacco is a form of contraband in prisons. Often, the sales of the tobacco go to gangs.

The Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC) is changing that. Now, tobacco will be legal in the prison system. The agency updated its smoking policy. Profits from tobacco sales will go towards re-entry programs.

12 News talked to MDOC Commissioner Burl Cain about the decision to legalize tobacco sales for the state’s 21 prisons.

The smoking policy was set to take effect on February 1, 2021, but it’s already up and running since officials were able to get the prices of tobacco products down.

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