There are two types of prisons in Georgia: county and state facilities. While they both serve the purpose of detaining criminal’s during a time of confinement, and while they both have many different means of dealing with inmates with different levels of offense, they differ in many aspects. Here are the main features of both types of facilities.

State Prisons

The most secure prisons in Georgia are state prisons, and they house repeat offenders, violent offenders, and non-violent offenders who have exhausted other forms of punishment. State prisons give prisoners access to resources like classes and information for a smooth reintroduction into society. State prisons number over thirty in the state of Georgia, and they all offer different forms of work detail and classifications.

Work detail can take on many forms, and all able-bodied prisoners are expected to contribute free labor as part of rehabilitation for reintroduction into society. This is a productive way for inmates to pass time and contribute to society. There are different types of work detail, and each inmate is scheduled to the work duty most befitting his or her talents or abilities.

  • Food and farm operations: Work detail in the form of food and farm operations specializes in preparing and packing foods and meats. They work on farms and in factories to distribute food with no cost for labor.
  • Construction operations: Offenders able to work on construction sites donate their labor to the state by delivering on the construction needs of Georgia state organizations and agencies.
  • Fire services: Inmates with particularly low security clearance are able to work in prison fire stations, responding to fire needs of the prison and rural communities.
  • Community services: The lowest security clearances are allowed to community service workers who perform highway maintenance and cleaning and who perform janitorial services on state and local government buildings.

Prisoners who show particular aptitudes are taught in industries such as metal fabrication and optics, acquiring on-the-job training for these specialized industries.

On top of the varying prison jobs available in Georgia state prison facilities, there are also multiple security clearances given to inmates, ranging from minimum to close security, with medium securities available between the two. Beginning with close security inmates, who pose the greatest escape risk, close security offers the most supervision and the tightest security. These offenders are likely guilty of the most serious crimes and have attempted violence and/or escapes previously. Medium security prisoners receive tight security but are offered more allowances than close security offenders. Minimum security prisoners are allowed the most prisoner to prisoner interaction, and they often receive work detail assignments.

County Prisons

In addition to the thirty-three state prisons in Georgia, there are many county prisons which hold lesser offenders. These low security offenders offer specialized services free of labor charges for the counties in which they’re housed. County prisons are meant for prisoners with the least risks, and they’re transferred to and housed by the county prison which takes a financial burden away from the state, and offers skilled labor for the county in which it’s located.

Counties also offer transitional centers, totaling five different counties. These centers are a place for inmates to begin doing community services and learning a trade, which allows state prisoners to transition back into society smoothly.

County and state prisons work together to benefit communities, the state itself, and prisoners. Security level and sentence are both mandated by the types of crimes committed, and the state and county prisons can together create the best sentences and rehabilitation available to inmates as they transition back into society. Prisoners who behave well and strive to rehabilitate can sometimes find job training and classes at low security county prisons.