DC inmates prepare to elect representative in first-of-its-kind election

The District is preparing to elect a representative for the 1,400 inmates being held at the D.C. jail — and the candidates are also behind bars, making it the first election of its kind.

Five candidates at the D.C. Central Detention Facility in Southeast are running for seat 7F07 on Ward 7’s Advisory Neighborhood Commission. The seat, created in 2011, has never been filled.

Forty-four-year-old Joel Caston is running for a second time alongside 59-year-old Keith Littlepage-El, 25-year-old Aaron Brown, 63-year-old Kim Thompson and 43-year-old Gary Proctor.

The issues the five candidates are focused on include health care access within the jail as well as more transparency on commissary profits.

The jail’s lockdown during the pandemic has made campaigning challenging, but with the election happening Tuesday, the D.C. Department of Corrections released videos of the candidates introducing themselves.

Each candidate also received assistance to meet the required 25 signatures in order to get on the ballot.

The seat represents the jail and the Harriet Tubman Women’s Shelter.

Melissa Howell

Melissa Howell joined WTOP Radio in March 2018 and is excited to cover stories that matter across D.C., as well as in Maryland and Virginia. 

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