What Are Two-For-Ones in County Jails?
Posted 12/22/2013 by Mark Miclette
Inmate & Family Issues, Jail Myths and Truths
Incarceration for your misdemeanor conviction will typically be done in a county jail. Incarceration for a felony conviction will be too, depending on how long you will be locked up. Many county jails are overcrowded, prompting administrators to use a Two-for-One program. If you are given the opportunity to participate, it means that each day you spend in jail counts as two days. Once your Two-for-One begins, you could feasibly cut your remaining time in half. Though each facility sets its own rules for such programs, the majority of them share the requirements outlined below.
You Must have Your Sentence: In most cases, you will not be allowed to enter a Two-for-One program while waiting to go to court. For example, you are in jail because you cannot make bond, or because of a probation violation, which in some counties carries a no-bond hold. Until you are found guilty and sentenced, there is no way of knowing how much time you will do. Two-for-One programs are coveted and are usually reserved for those who have a sentence in place.
Your Trusty Status: A Trusty is an inmate who is chosen to perform jobs within, and in some cases, outside of, the jail - jobs such as laundry work, kitchen work, landscape jobs, etc.. County jails do not typically offer paid jobs. Some prisons use handpicked Trusty workers. If the guards won't tell you how to apply for Trusty status, ask a family member to contact the jail administrators for that information and request that they follow-up with the results during your next call, visit or letter.
Staying out of Trouble: If you are allowed to enter the Two-For-One program, you must behave. Getting into trouble will not only get you removed from the program, but it can also cancel the Two-for-Ones history you have already built. If this happens you will have to complete your entire sentence minus any good-time credit opportunities given to everyone in the general prison population. You might also lose your Two-for-Ones if you pick up a new charge in the jail for a range of reasons such as having contraband, attempting an escape, refusing to obey a guard, or fighting with other inmates.