OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Twelve hours with no power. That’s what inmates and staff at the Oklahoma County Detention Center can expect on both Saturday and Sunday of this weekend as the jail undergoes maintenance.
On Thursday, Detention Center administrators announced that from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. on both days, there would be no power in the entire facility.
Officials said it’s necessary as they update the power grid.
“She’s already living hell on earth,” said Melissa Ellison, the mother of a young inmate currently in the jail. “I could not imagine what that’s going to do to her or any of those people in that. That breaks my heart.”
Ellison was on the brink of tears thinking about the poor conditions her daughter said they already deal with, like little food, poor plumbing and ventilation and limited opportunities to shower.
Jail staff said there are plans in place to address food, water, hygiene and medical needs.
“All those things they listed are already so bad,” Ellison said.
She was shocked there’s not another way to address the issue, worried that the conditions will become unbearable after hours upon hours of no electricity.
‘Their mental states are already so bad,” she said.
KFOR asked jail officials for an interview, but a spokesperson said, “We are going to decline the invitation at this time due to overexposing any vulnerabilities we may have.”
Ellison insisted, jailed or not, those living inside deserve better.
“These are people. It’s my daughter, it’s people’s sons,” Ellison said. “Yeah, they’ve made a mistake, they’ve messed up, but they’re human beings and this is by far inhumane.”