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ACLU asks Ohio to drop prison food provider after food quality issues
Attorneys say Aramark has a history of problems, including maggots in food
by WKSU's STATEHOUSE CORRESPONDENT JO INGLES


Reporter
Jo Ingles
 
The ACLU wants Ohio prisons to break with Aramark after reports of poor quality from the food provider.
Courtesy of Aramark
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The ACLU of Ohio is calling on the state’s corrections department to end its contract with the private company that provides food to Ohio’s prisons.

The ACLU’s Mike Brickner says the Aramark company has a pattern of problems, including a recent report of maggots found in food.

LISTEN: BRICKNER ON PRISON FOOD

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“[This is] nothing new," Brickner says. "This has been months of documented problems with Aramark since the prison food services were privatized here in Ohio. Just in April, the state levied $142,000 worth of fines against Aramark because they had fallen short of quality levels and have operational challenges that were unacceptable.”

Brickner says his organization is not ruling out any options, including a possible lawsuit, if the state does not take action.

In a written statement, Jo Ellen Smith with the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections says they take food safety very seriously. She says the department has made its concerns clear to Aramark and adds the company is taking steps to correct the problems, including plans to bring in a third-party company to review food prep and sanitation at the prisons.

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