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What Is the Hourly Wage Earned by New York State Prisoners?

Have you heard about New York State Prisoners being paid for being in jail? More specifically if a prisoner does work while they are incarcerated, they do earn a wage, they do earn money.

How much does a New York State Prisoner make per hour while they are 'a guest of New York State?' What is the Prison Minimum Wage Act and how could that change things for people who are behind bars? Here is what we found out when we were researching it.

How much does a prisoner in New York State make per hour?

VIDEO: Why Prisoners in New York Make Just 65 Cents Per Hour

Prison interior. Jail cells and shadows, dark background. 3d illustration



A prisoner who is incarcerated in New York State (on average) makes 62 cents per hour, as of April 2023, with according to the New York State Legislature, some prisoners making as little as 10 cents per hour or $3.00 per week. Other states like Nevada, Alaska, Maine, and Kansas where prisoners make $3 per hour.  


What do New York State Prisoners do for jobs while in jail?

VIDEO: This Is What It’s Like to Spend Your Life in Prison | NYT Opinion
The New York Times

Prisoners can do jobs (and get paid for it, hourly) in the areas the manufacture of license plates, of janitorial supplies, and of office furniture, to name a few things that they can get paid for.

READ MORE: What can you not bring into a prison in NYS? 

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PBS NewsHour

What is the Prison Minimum Wage Law, and How Will it Affect NYS Prisoners?

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The Marshall Project

Inspectorate Issue Report On HMP Norwich

Getty Images


The Prison Minimum Wage Act, which is currently in committee in the NYS Senate, under bill #S2345, this would change the NYS Correction Law and amend it so prisoners would get $3 an hour wage for each hour worked, while they are incarcerated. Do you think that this bill will pass?

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The New York Times

See What's Inside This Haunted NY Prison Abandoned a Decade Ago

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Associated Press

Gallery Credit: Photo: Jessica Hall

9 Famous People to Do Time in Central New York Prisons

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Urbanist: Exploring Cities

Can we have your autograph?! Just slip it through the bars, please.

Gallery Credit: Will Phillips

Photos: Bus Full of New York Prisoners Goes Up In Flames Near I-84

VIDEO: Fmr. inmate talks about life inside New York prison

A bus full of New York prisoners went up in flames in the Hudson Valley near I-84.

Gallery Credit: Bobby Welber


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