A recent “MTSU On the Record” radio program looked at how older inmates deal with the deaths of friends and relatives as well as their own mortality.
Host Gina Logue’s interview with Dr. Ron Aday, a professor of sociology, first aired Feb. 21 on WMOT-FM Roots Radio 89.5 and www.wmot.org. You can listen to their conversation below.
Aday is co-author of “Older Prisoners’ Experiences of Death, Dying and Grief Behind Bars,” which was published in the September 2016 edition of the Howard Journal of Crime and Justice. (You can read the report at this link.)
The report paints a grim portrait of a rapidly aging inmate population who often dare not give expression to their feelings when they learn that a loved one is dead.
While some fear becoming targets if they show any emotional vulnerability, the report notes, others try to come to grips with the realization they might not get the health care they need as they approach the end of their own lives.
“When I started studying this decades ago, we didn’t have 30,000 or 40,000 people that were over age 50,” said Aday. “Now it’s almost 300,000, and in another five years or so we’re going to have a half a million people over age 50, inmates that have three or four chronic illnesses.”
To hear previous “MTSU On the Record” programs, visit the searchable “Audio Clips” archives at www.mtsunews.com.
For more information about “MTSU On the Record,” contact Logue at 615-898-5081 or WMOT-FM at 615-898-2800.