Department of Corrections announces new initiative to improve safety, security of staff
The Department of Corrections announced a new initiative Tuesday that aims to improve the safety and security of staff working in its facilities.
The department says it has become increasingly difficult to maintain conditions within facilities like Rikers Island, due to a shortage of available staff.
According to the DOC, the problem isn’t underhiring, but that the staff simply isn’t showing up to work.
Just last month, the DOC says a daily average of 1,416 uniformed personnel called in sick, 93 correctional officers were AWOL and 1,163 staff members were medically monitored.
The DOC says staff being unavailable to work with inmates means their colleagues would be forced to work triple shifts.
The set of new initiatives named “New Day DOC” includes:
- Adjusting schedules of all available uniform staff
- Introducing a new academy next month to onboard 600 correction officers
- Establishing a new process for calling out sick
- Providing meals and free rides to staff who have worked double or triple shifts
The department also introduced disciplinary actions for inmates who are violent towards uniformed staff to increase their safety.