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What does the future hold for Washington prisons?

The old prison on McNeil Island as seen from the ferry.
Parker Miles Blohm
The old prison on McNeil Island as seen from the ferry.

A decade ago, the state of Washington permanently closed the state prison on McNeil Island — a casualty of the state’s Great Recession budget crisis. Today, the state operates 12 prisons, and not so long ago they were packed. But since COVID hit, there’s been a dramatic drop in the prison census. Might the state close yet another prison?

KNKX Olympia Correspondent Austin Jenkins joined Morning Edition host Kirsten Kendrick live to talk about the state of the state’s prisons.

Tune in 7:45 every Tuesday morning to hear Jenkins break down the biggest news in Washington.

Kirsten Kendrick hosts Morning Edition on KNKX and the sports interview series "Going Deep," talking with folks tied to sports in our region about what drives them — as professionals and people.
Vivian McCall is a former KNKX reporter, producer and host. She previously spent eight years as a reporter in Chicago, where she wrote for the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times and WBEZ public radio.