Sheriff Ditches 'Trendy' Orange Jail Jumpsuits

Black and white is the new orange in Michigan county
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 22, 2014 2:06 AM CDT
Sheriff Ditches 'Trendy' Orange Jail Jumpsuits
Inmates wearing a mix of orange and striped jumpsuits are lodged in a cell at the Saginaw County Jail.   (AP Photo/The Saginaw News/, Jeff Schrier)

A sheriff who blames the Netflix series Orange Is the New Black for making orange jumpsuits trendy has put his inmates in the black-and-white stripes that prisoners wore a century ago. "Some people think it's cool to look like an inmate of the Saginaw County Jail with wearing all-orange jumpsuits out at the mall or in public," the Saginaw County sheriff tells Michigan Live. "It's a concern because we do have our inmates out sometimes doing work in the public, and I don't want anyone to confuse them or have them walk away."

The new jumpsuits cost the same as the old orange ones and are being gradually phased in, but the inmates aren't wild about the change, according to the sheriff. "A lot of them have said, 'We don't like wearing black-and-white stripes,'" he says. "And my response is, 'Too bad. Don't come to jail.' I didn't ask you to come wear this uniform." He says that although he doesn't want the inmates getting "too comfortable," the uniform change isn't an attempt to "embarrass or shame" them—and he'll probably have to change the uniform again at some point. "It's cyclical," he says. "And there will come a time in the future when I change back to another color or different attire." (More prison stories.)

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