MEDFORD, Ore. – NAMI Southern Oregon is coming out against the proposal for a new jail tax district in Jackson County. The National Alliance on Mental Illness Southern Oregon announced their official stance against the proposal Tuesday night. The jail proposal is expected on this May’s ballot.
NAMI Southern Oregon says they are focused on the decriminalization of mental illness. In a news release, NAMI’S Meesha Blair stated, “The new jail is being promoted as a way to get services to people by incarcerating them and holding them longer; that’s a step backwards.”
Earlier in the process, NAMI Southern Oregon laid out three contingencies that they said needed to be met in order for their organization to support the measure.
In the past, Jackson County Sheriff Nathan Sickler has told NBC5 News that the county is in dire need of a bigger jail.
If the bond measure passes in April, the $166 million dollar project would fund construction of an 800 bed jail. It’s estimated to cost taxpayers about .83 cents per $1,000 dollars of assessed property value.