Assemblyman Joe Giglio (R,I,C-Gowanda), Ranking Minority Member on the Assembly Committee on Correction, and other members of the Minority conference, today met with dedicated correctional facility professionals at the Assembly Minority Statewide Forums on Workforce Issues in the Correctional System, in Albany, in order to discuss ways of improving working conditions and making prisons safer for inmates and staff.
“It was an honor to speak with so many dedicated correction officers today, regarding their concerns, in order to implement improvements in the current system,” stated Giglio, who is acting Co-Chair of the Forums. “Our focus must be on maintaining the safety of our officers, as well as ensuring that inmates are properly rehabilitated before re-entering the community. During these tough economic times, it is vital that we ensure that monies are being spent wisely and efficiently.”
Currently, New York’s maximum security facilities are operating at 123% of capacity. In addition, the annexes at Butler, Eastern, Green Haven, Groveland, Lakeview, Sullivan and Washington Correctional Facilities also are scheduled to close by October 1, 2009; these closures will result in the loss of approximately 325 staff positions, of which 292 are uniformed.
“The staff and officers that work at these facilities have dedicated their lives to the safety of our communities,” stated Giglio. “In a system that is already operating at beyond maximum capacity, we must ensure that their voices are heard as we gather feedback on this important issue.”