TagKitchen and Quality of Food

paralegal confirms sample from jail food as mouse feces; reviews prisoner food logs to confirm that caloric intake in jail is far lower than medically necessary

Between August 16 and August 29, 2020, Marcus tracked how many trays he received that were dirty (remnants of leftover food bits from previous meals still stuck to trays). After reviewing this information, I found that out of 28 meals that came on trays during this time period (14 breakfasts and dinners), 10 meals came on dirty trays (around 36 percent).

paralegal details multitude of ways the jail kitchen does not meet health and safety food service standards

If what the women inmate kitchen workers state is true, that trays which fall on the ground are simply picked up and placed back on tables for filing, or that upon finding rodent feces or cockroaches, the Aramark workers will merely pick off the feces or bugs and then serve the food, this is unacceptable and unsanitary practices, and must be curtailed immediately.

pod worker describes completely inedible food of all kinds; rodent and cockroach infestation in kitchen and housing units; grievances marked resolved without fixing the problem

When we filed grievances, the response is “resolved” because they have put sticky traps under the oven and vending machines. But, it doesn’t fix the reason the mice are here. The jail has not repaired the holes in the walls where the mice live.

kitchen worker reports burnt and inedible food, rodents in kitchen, aramark workers do nothing when issues are brought to their attention

Last week, for some reason, I got a stomach illness. I was throwing up, I was constipated, my stomach burned, and I could not eat for two days. I think it was related to something I ate. It’s hard to know if my stomach illness came from eating burnt food, or if it came from eating food that was contaminated.

prisoner on special diet misses 22 meals in one month because trays don’t match dietary needs, portions are inadequate even in correct trays, loses 25 lbs. in 4 months

In June, I missed 22 meals. In July, I missed 14 meals. Despite me submitting that grievance regarding missed meals back in mid-March 2020, the jail still often does not provide me with my meals, and does not provide me with replacement gluten free meals when my meal is missing.

prisoner finds rodent feces in food, grievance is marked resolved after he is offered a new tray; is then afraid to eat jail food and loses 10 lbs.

After the incident, I was afraid to eat the food, particularly since the guards and the sergeant didn’t seem to care. It is not just about getting a new lunch, because any meal, or every meal could have feces in it. It just happened that I caught it that one time, so getting a new lunch does not change the fact that the kitchen has mice.

prisoner logs food portion and quality; finds food consistently spoiled, falls short of both portion size and items on menu, disgusting and inedible, food trays filthy, loses 70 lbs. in 8 months as a result

Around January or February of 2020, when Aramark started changing the menu, reducing the food portions more, and leaving out more of the meal elements, and I started losing weight. I have lost almost 70 pounds between January and August 2020 (eight months). In August 2020, I weighed 180 pounds, which I haven’t weighed since I was 16 years old.

rats, birds, cockroaches all over kitchen and in food; concerns over eating a cockroach in the rice dismissed by aramark workers

I was stirring my rice when I saw a cockroach in the rice. Its body was partially translucent and I could see its skeleton, it had cooked into the rice, but I could see the legs and the wings. Finding the cockroach in my rice made me feel sick. I threw up from eating that cockroach.

prisoner grievances of feces in food denied; food consistently inedible; “unsafe food… forces most folks to go buy commissary, leading to huge profit margins for the jail”

Especially now that we are getting our food on disposable trays, I see many unopened or barely touched trays going straight into the trash can. This speaks to the food’s safety issues and terrible quality because we are so hungry all the time – we wouldn’t just throw anything out without it being truly disgusting or threatening to our health.

prisoner describes food contamination, overcooking to the point of being inedible, other examples of poor food quality

When the trays aren’t cleaned properly, the food remnants that stick to the trays just keep getting cooked into the plastic of the trays more and more. When there are food remnants on the bottom or sides of the trays, this means my food is contaminated, which feels unsanitary and not safe to eat.

kitchen worker describes consistently expired, spoiled, and contaminated food; aramark workers purposefully failing to address these issues

I have seen our Aramark supervisor, Margarita, pull unused trays out of the garbage to be used on the line again. This concerns me because I try to keep things as clean and sanitary as possible. Margarita sometimes sees rat poop sitting on top of the trays. I have seen her dust off rat poop with her bare hands. I have also seen Margarita pull bugs out of the food, with her hands.

kitchen worker describes food consistently spoiled by lack of refrigeration, food cooked with maggots in it, rats in freezer

The food at Santa Rita Jail is frequently spoiled and inedible. On the week of October 5, 2020, when I was still in HU 22, beans were served with maggots in them. The maggots were cooked with the beans. When we told the deputy, his response is “this is all you get”, “eat it or throw it away”.

kitchen worker describes feces, rats, cockroaches, birds in kitchen; aramark refuses to adequately address poor food quality and unsanitary conditions

I have found rat poop on top of the meal trays that are going out to the housing units. When I brought this issue up with Margarita, she picked off the rat poop with her bare hands and threw it away.... I reported this to a kitchen deputy and asked for the trays to be remade. We have to fight to get Aramark to throw away food that is not fit to serve. Rather than make all new trays, they try to...

prisoner being retaliated against for filing grievances; calls for third-party surprise visits to jail

Sheriff Ahern and his deputies have a blatant disregard for taxpayers money. From sexual harassment to deputies giving each other massages on the taxpayers dime, and lots more in between, including being locked outside in the yard, and past dinner, and then having to beg for food. It's time for this jail to have a more serious audit than the current one. There needs to be an unbiased third-party...

jail lying about conditions and covid-19 cases, dangerous medical neglect, abuse by deputies, disgusting sanitary conditions: “Every human life here is based on a dollar”

Every human life here is based on a dollar. It doesn't matter if you're spending money on this GTL network or buying these overpriced canteen items. People are being denied the full medical treatment they need. Please share this information with the news and anyone you can. The jail is providing false information to the media. The more people whose eyes are opened to conditions like this the...

roaches, bird droppings, and mice in food among other unsanitary conditions; prisoners forced to clean for inspections and face retaliation and abuse from deputies for speaking out

During inspections, they make the “podworkers” slave day in day out to cover up all the seen dirt-filled areas, waxing floors and door knobs.....Sergeants come in housing units angry, demanding all sorts of cleaning done to the entire housing unit overnight, and the deputies put their slave pod workers to work fast! Cleaning inside and even outside in 100-degree weather heat. Cleaning to injury...

Learn how you can take action to demand more releases from Santa Rita to protect the health and safety of our community