Punishment for Refusing to Work-Workhouse

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Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, except as provided in T.C.A. § 41-2-150(b), any person sentenced to the county workhouse, for either a felony or misdemeanor conviction, in counties with programs whereby prisoners work either for pay or sentence reduction or both, shall be required to participate in such work programs during the period of incarceration. Any prisoner who refuses to participate in such programs when work is available shall have any sentence reduction credits received pursuant to the provisions of T.C.A. § 41-2-123 or T.C.A. § 41-2-146 reduced by two days of credit for each one day of refusal to work. Any prisoner who refuses to participate in such work programs who has not received any sentence reduction credits pursuant to such sections may be denied good time credit in accordance with the provisions of T.C.A. § 41-2-111(b), and may also be denied any other privileges given to inmates in good standing. T.C.A. § 41-2-150(a).

The only exceptions to the work requirements of T.C.A. § 41-2-150(a) shall be for those who, in the opinion of the workhouse superintendent, would present a security risk or a danger to the public if allowed to leave the confines of the workhouse, and those who, in the opinion of a licensed physician or licensed medical professional, should not perform such labor for medical reasons. T.C.A. § 41-2-150(b).

Pursuant to T.C.A. § 41-2-120(a), any prisoner refusing to work or becoming disorderly may be confined in solitary confinement or subjected to such other punishment, not inconsistent with humanity, as may be deemed necessary by the workhouse superintendent for the control of the prisoners, including reducing sentence credits pursuant to the procedure established in T.C.A. § 41-2-111. Such prisoners refusing to work, or while in solitary confinement, shall receive no credit for the time so spent. T.C.A. § 41-2-120(b).