Local Manufacturers Market Electronic Cigarettes to Jails

Published 07/23 2014 06:03PM

Updated 07/23 2014 06:17PM

WASHINGTON – Create a cigarette substitute for prisoners. That was the goal for the founders of NeUll’s more than a year ago, and in the middle of June this year, they launched their jail-safe electronic cigarette.
“It’s clear. You see all of the components here on the inside. There’s nothing to hide,” founder Matt Martin said.
You can not only see right through his e-cig, but it is made of soft plastic, which Martin said makes it nearly impossible to turn it into a weapon.
Martin said inmates addicted to cigarettes can smoke the e-cigarette to fill a void and make them less irritable.
“Our term, we call it, is ‘a happy prisoner makes for a safer prison,’” he said.
And the NeUll’s are being used as an incentive in some jails.
“If I’m a smoker, and I have the opportunity to buy this is in the commissary for good behavior, it may very well affect my behavior,” Martin said.
Jails are catching on to the concept. Knox County recently decided to start selling NeUll’s in its commissary. They may not be the only ones in Illinois doing it for long. Martin said he expects at least ten counties in the state to start selling these e-cigs in the next six months.
“It creates a financial gain for the commissary to be able to then create more staff and then have a more safe environment,” Martin said.
Martin said NeUll’s cost about seven dollars, but jails can jack up the price to generate more of that revenue. He said Knox County is selling NeUll’s for $14 at its commissary.

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