Tag Archives: union

IA: Union: System in crisis, prison understaffed

From the article: “Dozens of union members picketed Friday outside the Iowa Medical and Classification Center, protesting what they say are dangerously low staffing levels and calling for the resignation of the state’s corrections director.”

Read more here.

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Texas prison guards to join inmate lawsuit over sweltering jails

“The union that represents Texas’ correctional officers has reportedly announced its support of lawsuits filed over the deaths of at least 14 inmates in sweltering state prisons, claiming the institutions should be cooled to relieve unbearable conditions.”

It’s not about inmates living in AC splendor.  Heat can be lethal to some inmates, particularly the elderly and those on psychotropic medications.

Read more here.
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Ohio prison works to reduce inmate assaults

From the article: “Inmate-on-inmate assaults nearly doubled in two years at a north-central Ohio prison, higher than the statewide average, according to a new report that also notes an increase in disturbances and low morale among guards.”

The union says that the report paints too rosy a picture of the facility and that it’s still a dangerous place to work.

Read more here.

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NZ: Prison postcard costs tutor job

From the article: “Ms Hill sent the card to a prisoner while on an overseas trip, to ”assist that student in the learning process,” Authority member Paul Stapp outlined  in his decision.”

Hmm…truth or BS?  You decide.

Read more here.

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New Zealand: Prison boss defends inmate riot tactics

From the article: “Officers confronted by 29 rioting inmates at the Spring Hill prison would have been overwhelmed if they had tried to use pepper spray, Corrections Department chief executive Ray Smith says.”

So, what do you think was their better option?

Mr Smith said the prison officers who arrested the rioting inmates had “the tools that were best going to work”, including helmets, shields, stab-proof vests and batons.

No offense to the prison staff, but that is malarkey.  It is always more dangerous to use instruments that force an officer to get within arms’ length of a rioting inmate (or any person).  Batons and physical force always place officers and inmates at more risk.  The better option would have been non-lethal chemical munitions.  I don’t agree with the Corrections Association president’s comments in the article, but I do agree that officers should have ready access to chemical munitions – in this case, they were apparently locked away and inaccessible, so they might as well have not have had any at all.

Then again, hindsight is always 20/20 in critical incident management…

Read the article here.

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Canada: Edmonton prison guards could face discipline

From the article: “Guards who participated in a five-day illegal strike at the Edmonton Remand Centre have been told they could face discipline despite what the union believed were assurances from the province that no striker would be reprimanded.”

I still don’t know how you can have a strike at a correctional facility…

Read the article here.

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TX: Union: Prison guard shortage magnified at holiday

From the article: “A union for correctional officers in Texas says understaffing is putting guards at increased risk, especially around the holidays, during what has already been the deadliest year inside state prisons in more than a decade.”

 According to the article, TX corrections officers start at $28K.  After seven years, they still only make approximately $37K.  Of course, overtime can add a lot, but that’s still not much.
Further, inmate violence is on the rise, with ten inmate homicides this year, an increase from three total last year.
Read more here.
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Fla. judge skeptical about prison privatization

From the article: “A skeptical judge on Monday raised questions about whether it was legal for the state to move ahead with a plan to privatize nearly 3,000 health care jobs in Florida’s prisons.”

Florida signed a contract with a company to privatize the healthcare services that it provides in its state prisons.  Proponents of the contract stated that it will save the state millions of dollars; reportedly, failure to privatize would result in a deficit of $60 million.  Opponents (i.e. unions) are litigating on the grounds that the Legislative Budget Commission, which approved the contract, did not have the authority to enact this broad of policy.

Read more here.

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OH: Violent incidents getting worse at MANCI

This is the same institution where there was a recent death of an inmate.  According to the article, the inmate was stabbed 22 times.  The victim’s cellmate has already confessed to the death (unsurprising, since it happened after lockdown and they were the only two in there).  The officers’ union says that violent incidents have gone up at the institution and that they are understaffed; the Ohio prison system spokesperson says that violence has gone down at the institution since 2011.  Hmmm….read the article here and you be the judge.

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NY: Guard guilty of inmate attack keeps job

Even an admitted assault on an inmate can’t get someone fired from the Erie County, NY sheriff’s department.

In this case, an inmate in the jail told the officer that another inmate held drugs.  Officers searched the other inmate’s cell, but found nothing.  The officer then told the inmate snitch that because he had lied, he would have to be punched.

Huh.  I’d like to see that written in an inmate handbook.

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