New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu responds to video from inside the Orleans Parish Prison showing inmates doing drugs, gambling and playing with a loaded gun.
“Our beef has been primarily with the Department of Justice who continues to come down here and have mandates without bringing money to assist. The funding from the federal government since 1996 has been cut by 88%. So they have to have skin in the game, and they have to be willing not only to tell us what to do but how to do it and help us do it.”
“DOJ has not been, in my opinion, a competent partner on this particular issue.”
When asked if he thought conditions have gotten better since that video was shot, Mayor Landrieu replied, “I don’t have access to the prisons. The Sheriff is the keeper of the jail. I can’t go in the prison, I’m not authorized to go in the prisons.”
“It doesn’t make sense to lay off police officers to hire more guards when, in fact, half of the guards aren’t guarding the prisoners. So for us, it’s a management issue. There’s a way to fix this thing, but it’s got to be everybody in, everybody pulling in the same direction. There’s got to be a clear plan, there has to be great management, there has to be great confidence that the public has in the management.”