The number of people sent into prison is growing. Latinos, for instance, are considered to be the fastest minority group being imprisoned. How to survive in prison or jail if you are Hispanic (Latino)? Here are some advice that you can follow or keep in mind.
Stay alive at all cost. This is how to survive in prison or jail if you are Hispanic (Latino). Follow the convict code. Mind your own business and don’t ever rat on anyone.
Prison gangs or groups exist and you can choose either to join one or not. In prison, people tend to form groups based on culture and ethnicity. Bias among different groups is formed and fights occur as a result.
If you are Hispanic or a Latino, a Mexican group may encourage you to join them. Others will threaten or pressure you into joining them outright. Being in a group can be advantageous. It offers security and can make your prison life more comfortable. However, it can also make your stay in the prison even more frightening. You are expected to follow rules and commands given by members who are ranked higher than you. At times, some prisoners are forced to even kill someone. So before you go and join a gang, make sure you know who you are dealing with.
Pull yourself together. Don’t let yourself waste away. You need to stay strong and sharp in order to survive in prison. Don’t let yourself be pushed around and demand respect. Also, make sure to respect others while you’re at it. Try not to make an enemy. Be sure not to gossip about somebody or rat on someone. This will immediately put your name in the black list and other prisoners may end up beating you at first sight. As much as possible, try your best not to stand out from the rest of the prison population. As the saying goes, “the nail that sticks out gets hammered.”
Do not gamble or take drugs. These activities will just make your life miserable. You may end up being indebted to someone and be a slave or be a drug addict who is unable to function in society. Keep yourself clean and associate yourself with mature people looking to make themselves better in prison. It may be tempting to do drugs so you can at least forget that you’re incarcerated, but think of the long-term effects it will have on your mind and body. The temporary relief brought about by drugs is not worth getting a couple more years added to your prison sentence.
It may seem logical, since you are locked up with other criminals and all, but you should never conceal weapons of any kind in your cell. Some people would argue that you should at least keep a shank under your mattress so you have something to protect yourself with in case a riot breaks out, but it will only get you in deeper trouble. The prison personnel conduct regular inspections of the inmates’ cells, and if they find any contrabands, the inmate responsible will be subject to disciplinary action, and may even have a couple more years added to his sentence.
In hindsight, you should also check your belongings just to make sure that the other inmates didn’t hide their contrabands in there. The worst thing that could ever happen to you is to take the heat for some other person’s mess. Additionally, you should never let the other inmates pressure you into hiding their contrabands, but you should never snitch on them. It may not seem like it, but the information network within the inmates is so accurate that they will find out if you ratted on a fellow prisoner.
Find work or a hobby to keep you sane and busy. Set goals to accomplish each day. Read books and learn new things. This will improve yourself and prepare you when you are out and free. Learning a skillset and doing actual work inside prison will also help you earn money. You can also spend time keeping your body fit. You should be ready to fight when the time comes. Sometimes, you can’t avoid trouble and you must fight and win if possible. This will keep bullies away from you in the future.
The great thing about modern correctional facilities is that they now provide the inmates with chances to better themselves, and you should take advantage of these programs. If you weren’t able to get your high school diploma, you can join prison programs that let the inmates get their GEDs. This will really help you land a job once you get out of jail.
Some correctional facilities also provide livelihood programs that train the inmates in various skills that they can use once they regain their freedom. Some prisons have an automotive garage where the inmates are taught how to tinker with and repair cars and other vehicles, there are even some prisons who teach the prisoners programming. If you happen to find yourself in a correctional facility that offers coding lessons to the inmates, you should take advantage of it and sign up for lessons. This will help keep your mind sharp and actually give you hope that you will find worthwhile employment once you serve your sentence.
If you have friends and family outside of prison, then they can support you mentally and spiritually. Have them send you letters or better yet, ask them to visit you from time to time. If it’s allowed, keep a journal. Write down all of your thoughts during your stay in prison, you can even write poems or short stories about your stay. Writing will help distract your thoughts away from your current predicament and keep you sane.
This guide on how to survive in prison or jail if you are Hispanic (Latino) can help make your life in prison more bearable. However, prisons and their prisoners are different. You should learn to adapt when you are inside and deal with things as they come.