Department of Correction

 

 

 

 

DOCLogo

 

 

At a Glance

 

BRIAN K. MURPHY, Acting Commissioner

Carol Salsbury, Acting Deputy Commissioner of Administration

Mark Strange, Acting Deputy Commissioner of Operations

Kimberly Weir, Acting Director of Security

Patrick Hynes, Acting Director of Programs and Treatment

Brian Garnett, Director of External Affairs

Joseph Haggan, Acting Director of Parole and Community Services

Established Ė 1968

Statutory authority Ė CGS Sec. 18-78

Central office Ė 24 Wolcott Hill Road,

Wethersfield, CT 06109

Number of full-time employees Ė 6,882

Recurring operating expenses Ė $710,139,836

Capital outlay Ė $7,203,151

Organizational structure Ė Six divisions to include: Administration, Operations, Security, Programs and Treatment, External Affairs, Parole and Community Services, as well as an Affirmative Action Unit and Legal Affairs Unit.

 

 

Mission

The Department of Correction shall protect the public, protect staff, and provide safe, secure, and humane supervision of offenders with opportunities that support successful community reintegration.

 

Statutory Responsibility

†††† The Department of Correction, by direction of the courts, confines and controls accused and sentenced inmates in correctional institutions, centers and units, and by statute administers medical, mental health, rehabilitative, and community based service programs.

 

Public Service

†††† The Department of Correction on June 30, 2009 confined 18,869 offenders, a 2.61 percent decline when compared with the incarcerated population on June 30, 2008.Including those inmates on Department administered community supervision; correctional staff supervised a population of 23,416 offenders.

†††

 

Administration Division

The Administration Division oversees essential support functions and overall administrative management for the Department.The Fiscal Services Unit develops, implements and monitors the budget and other fiscal functions. Food service to inmates is provided through this Divisionís Nutrition and Food Services Unit. The Human Resources Unit provides all human resource functions, including labor relations, recruitment and payroll.The Maloney Center for Training and Staff Development oversees all of the training conducted by the Department, including pre-service for new hires and ongoing in-service training, along with new supervisors and leadership training.Management Information Systems maintains the Departmentís computer network, hardware and software, as well as administering data extraction.The Engineering and Facilities Management Unit provides all maintenance, construction, telecommunications and a Life Safety Program.The Organizational Development Unit serves as a resource to the department in the areas of grant acquisition and management, research and evaluation and organizational development services, such as strategic planning and performance improvement initiatives.

 

Fiscal Services

Nutrition and Food Services

Human Resources

Training and Staff Development

Management Information Systems

Engineering and Facilities Management

Organizational Development Unit††

 

Operations Division

†††† The Operations Division encompasses 18 correctional facilities, which are managed by two district administrators and 17 wardens.There are 14 correctional institutions and four correctional centers, which incarcerate approximately 18,900 inmates.It is the mission of the Operations Division to protect the public and staff while ensuring the secure, safe and humane supervision of offenders with opportunities that support successful community reintegration.

 

††††† This Division also encompasses a wide range of emergency services to include Correctional Emergency Response Team, Special Operations Group, K-9 Unit and Situational Control Hostage negotiators.The Division maintains a medical-surgical ward at the University of Connecticut Health Center in Farmington, the inmate Correctional Transportation Unit and the Departmentís Honor Guard and Bagpipe and Drum Band.

 

North District††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† South District

Bergin Correctional Institution (Storrs)†††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Bridgeport Correctional Center (Bridgeport)

Brooklyn Correctional Institution (Brooklyn)†††††††††††††††††††† Cheshire Correctional Institution (Cheshire)

Corrigan-Radgowski Correctional Center (Uncasville)††††††† Garner Correctional Institution (Newtown)

MacDougall-Walker Correctional Institution (Suffield)†††††† Gates Correctional Institution (Niantic)

Northern Correctional Institution (Somers)††††††††††††††††††††††† Hartford Correctional Center (Hartford)

Osborn Correctional Institution (Somers)††††††††††††††††††††††††† Manson Youth Institution (Cheshire)

Robinson Correctional Institution (Enfield)†††††††††††††††††††††† New Haven Correctional Center (New Haven)

Willard-Cybulski Correctional Institution (Enfield)††††††††††††††††††††††† Webster Correctional Institutional (Cheshire)

Enfield Correctional Institution (Enfield)††††††††††††††††††††††††† York Correctional Institution (Niantic)†††††

 

Security Division

The Security Division has the responsibility of ensuring the safety and security of the Department.The Division is comprised of the Investigations, Security Risk Group, Special Intelligence, Telephone Monitoring and Computer Forensics Units.The contributions made by these specialized units enhance the internal safety and security of the Department as well as the safety of its staff and the public.

The Investigations Unit has the primary responsibility of conducting internal investigations at the direction of the Commissioner of Correction as well as joint investigations with federal, state and local authorities.This Unit also conducts annual security audits throughout the Department and oversees the disposal of contraband collected in the facilities.

The members of the Security Risk Group and Telephone Monitoring Units work collaboratively to acquire, analyze and disseminate pertinent security information throughout the Department and to the law enforcement community. Through the targeted and random monitoring of non-privileged inmate communications, criminal activity, both internally and externally, is reduced, and in some cases prevented, throughout the State of Connecticut.

The Special Intelligence Unit provides an intelligence gathering conduit for the exchange of intelligence information related to criminal and terrorist activity with federal, state, local and judicial agencies.

The Computer Forensics Unit is responsible for the forensic examination of computer and digital media devices in support of investigations to recover, analyze and document evidence.

Investigations

Security Risk Group Intelligence

Special Intelligence

Telephone-Monitoring

Computer Forensics

 

Programs and Treatment Division

The Departmentís Programs and Treatment Division supports the Departmentís mission through provision of a wide range of services structured to prepare offenders for successful community transition, a process which begins on the first day of sentence. This Division oversees administration of health and addiction services, offender program development, educational, vocational, recreational and religious programs, management of the inmate population and classification functions, offender re-entry services, Correctional Enterprises of Connecticut and management of the Departmentís volunteer and victim services programs.Division personnel collaborate with other criminal justice and human service agencies, community providers and volunteers to develop comprehensive wrap-around services and offer offenders opportunities for positive change to facilitate successful transition into the community.

Services administered by this Division focus on re-entry success and recidivism prevention through offender responsibility and accountability.The eight units in this Division work together to develop program plans, individualized for each offender that extend from incarceration through their return to the community. The Offender Classification and Population Management Unit assesses, classifies and assigns inmate risk levels, and develops offender accountability plans to address identified needs.†† Offender Programs researches and develops evidence-based services and tracking systems to evaluate program effectiveness. Health Services partners with the University of Connecticut Correctional Managed Health Care to offer extensive medical and mental health services throughout the Department. Certified Addiction Counselors promote recovery through delivery of substance abuse treatment to offenders.Unified School District #1 provides both mainstream and special education, offering GED attainment, English as a Second Language and technical and vocational trade certification. Correctional Enterprises of Connecticut trains offenders in occupational development skills and offers the opportunity to gain actual work experience in the production of goods and services for state, municipal and non-profit organizations. Chaplains offer forums for inmates to practice their beliefs in a wide range of worship services and religious studies.Division personnel work closely with the community, providing support and information to victims of crime and working with volunteers, who augment program delivery, supplementing education, treatment and religious services.The Offender Re-Entry Services Unit coordinates the provision of transitional services with criminal justice agencies and community service providers to ensure a continuity of care following release.

 

Offender Classification and Population Management

Offender Programs and Victim Services

Health and Addiction Services

Education Services/Unified School District #1

Religious Services

Correctional Enterprises of Connecticut

Volunteer & Recreation Services

Offender Re-Entry Services

 

External Affairs Division

This Division oversees the Departmentís liaison functions with the other components of state government as well as with the public and the news media.

The Office of Public Information insures that information concerning departmental incidents, activities and the inmate population are provided to the public and media in a timely, proactive and professional manner, within the bounds of safety and security.

A Legislative Liaison, responsible for drafting legislation and state regulations, works closely with the General Assembly on issues related to the criminal justice system and corrections.

The Freedom of Information Unit insures the Department fully complies with state statutes requiring the open availability of public documents to the public, staff and the inmate population, while insuring that safety and security are not compromised.

The Office of Standards and Policy is responsible for the writing, review and revision of the Departmentís Administrative Directives.

The Correspondence Unit responds to public inquiry received through the Departmentís website and provides responses to correspondence regarding correctional matters that have been sent to the Office of the Governor.

††††† The Audio/Video Production Unit, through the application of modern multimedia production techniques, is responsible for the creation of educational aids that are utilized to enhance the extensive pre-service and in-service training that all staff is provided on an annual basis. The staff of this Unit also supports the Maloney Center for Training and Staff Development in its mission of staff training, as well as for special departmental events such as graduations, conferences, and the annual award ceremony. The unit also regularly works with the Connecticut Office of the Attorney General, providing technical support for the defense of lawsuits brought against the Department.Support is also provided in the areas of news and public affairs.

 

Office of Public Information

Legislative Liaison Unit

Freedom of Information Unit

Office of Standards and Policy

Correspondence Unit

Audio/Video Production Unit

 

Parole and Community Services Division

The Parole and Community Services Division is responsible for supervising and providing support services to all offenders released to the community, whether to halfway houses, Transitional Supervision or on parole or special parole.Parole officers in each district and unit supervise offender adherence to release conditions and assist in directing offender reintegration into their communities while enhancing accountability and public safety.

The mission of this Division is to protect the public by effectively supervising offenders in the community and to provide offenders under community supervision with direction and support services that will increase the probability of successful reintegration into the community, thereby reducing recidivism.

 

Hartford District

New Haven District

Bridgeport District

Waterbury District

Norwich District††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

Residential Services†††††††††††††††

Central Intake

Special Management

Mental Health

Fugitive Team

 

 

Improvements/Achievements 2008-09

Administration Division

Based on the stateís budgetary constraints, the Fiscal Services Unit utilized economies wherever possible as the year progressed, analyzing cost areas to limit expenses while maintaining support for essential services. After coordinating a thorough analysis of Community Support Services requirements, the contracts section completed a full RFP process and established new contracts for all private provider services.

The Nutrition and Food Services Unit fed approximately 19,040 inmates per day, 3 times per day, 365 days a year totaling approximately 20,848,800 meals per year. Even with the increasing price of food, the approximate cost per inmate per day is $2.44. Taking advantage of opportunity and spot buys saved the Department approximately $1.5 million dollars in food costs. The Food Production Center provided over 5,000,000 lbs. of food for all facilities in FY 08/09 for the inmate populationís consumption, including fresh fruit and vegetables through the Departmentís commitment to utilize Connecticut grown produce.During FY 08/09, the Food Services Unit instituted a more health conscientious menu, providing more protein and fiber, and lowering fat content in the meals. Working with Correctional Managed Health Care a more effective therapeutic diet menu was developed, implementing low fat, low cholesterol cook chill products through the Food Production Center, helping to aid the facilities in serving special diets to inmates.

The Human Resources Unit processed more than 565 retirement packages this year, of which, approximately 461 were processed as a result of the state Retirement Incentive Program. A Critical Refill Plan was submitted and approved to refill critical warden, correction officer, lieutenant, captain, correctional food service supervisor, correctional counselor, correctional counselor supervisor, maintenance and fiscal positions. Although the Department was in a hiring freeze during this fiscal year, the recruitment unit conducted more than 1,000 interviews in an effort to be prepared for promotions and new hires.

The Human Resources Unit continues to work collaboratively with other state agencies to participate in the Ergonomics Study and the 24/7 Scheduling Project. The Ergonomics Study is designed to prioritize and address staff health initiatives. We are working with the Healthy Workplace Center at the University of Connecticut to improve workplace and personal health for Department employees. The 24/7 Scheduling Project will improve scheduling and payment of overtime, and implementation is expected to commence in calendar year 2010.

The Maloney Center is implementing a computerized Learning Management System to track and more efficiently provide distance based learning to staff.

As part of the increase in information sharing with law enforcement, MIS installed additional video conferencing units in 14 facilities and Parole and Community Service offices.Previously five facilities had been set up with video conferencing equipment.Since the units became operational in September, more than 3,000 video conferences have been held.The numbers have increased from less than 100 conferences in August, 2008 to almost 400 held in June, 2009.Approximately 67% of parole hearings are now done through video conferencing and more than 800 video conferences were held with the Judicial Branch.

As part of the Departmentís Business Reengineering Project to modernize our IT systems, MIS introduced a new Inmate Overview Sheet for the Court Trips process.The new sheet is saving time, money and resources as staff can now do in one sheet what would have taken them to look up the same information from at least five different system screens and files.

MIS and Fiscal Services collaborated with Western Union to establish a new electronic deposit system for inmates to receive funds from family and friends.Family members can now electronically deposit money into an inmateís trust fund without having to send in a money order.This saves staff time to process the money order and allows the inmate to get his/her funds in a timelier manner.

The Facilities Management and Engineering Unit supervised the completion of 48 construction projects at a total cost of $6,858,712.99.

The Unitís commitment to energy efficiency and conservation remained a priority with 17 completed projects resulting in annual savings of $347,567.29. The Unit continues to provide certification to its professional staff through the nationally recognized Building Operator Certification Program.Currently, there are nine Plant Facilities Engineers and one Design Engineer with this certification.

We have successfully purchased and deployed 952 new portable radios and 10 control stations in nine facilities.We have successfully complied with the broadcast industry conversion from an analog to digital signal at all correctional facilities.

The Organizational Development Unit in association with various divisions and units completed: the Department-wide Strategic Plan; the coordination and publication of the Statewide Reentry Strategy, Partners in Progress and the Statewide Risk Assessment Strategy.††

Within the grants function two major awards were received: Prisoner Reentry Initiative grant for $540,000 from the United States Department of Justice to serve the Bridgeport area and the Justice and Mental Health Collaboration grant for $250,000 from the United States Department of Justice for the ASIST- Assist Home Project.Collaborating with Health and Addiction Services, DOC was awarded a Yale School of Medicine Workforce Development Supervisory Competencies training and technical assistance award to begin October 2009.For the Second Chance Act, DOC convened a multi-agency and community planning committee that worked collaboratively to develop a funding proposal to serve New Haven.Additionally, DOC provided 28 letters of support to state agencies, universities, and nonprofit organizations endorsing their funding applications for research, treatment programs, and reentry services for offenders.

Finally, DOC received three awards from the Office of Policy and Management associated with the federal stimulus funding.In conformance with Executive Order #25, the Grants and Contracts Manager was designated Department Accountability Officer to manage stimulus grant activities.

The Research and Evaluation unit continues to grow and improve operations.Achievements this year include the completion of three research studies with Yale and the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS):Yaleís SWAB study; DMHAS and Yaleís RRR study and the development of a Standard Operating Policy Manual in collaboration with Yale.With the University of Connecticut (UCONN), the Director co-applied for and received a Partners in Research grant for $18,051 from the National Institute of Health.This grant award along with the creation of CALM, Correctional Academic Liaison Meeting, will assist with our mission of furthering communications and collaborations with our major partners, DMHAS, UCONN and Yale.

 

Operations Division

††††† The Department has effectively managed the increase in the inmate population attributed to a comprehensive review of the criminal justice system.The Department will continue to monitor the inmate population and plan accordingly.However, despite the increase in the inmate population, incident rates have remained stable throughout the agency and at historically low levels.

††††† The Connecticut Department of Correction has consistently increased the number of offenders who have been placed in the community under supervision in furtherance of the agency's re-entry model consistent with public safety.The Department of Correction is committed to utilizing this mechanism to support appropriate offenders in their return to law-abiding society by providing a period of supervision in the community prior to the end of their sentence. The total number of offender releases has remained stable from the previous year with 14,489 offenders released from July 1, 2008 through June 30, 2009.

††††† The Connecticut Department of Correction with the Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management has established a comprehensive Pandemic Emergency Plan for all areas of the agency and participated in the statewide, multi-agency pandemic drill facilitated by the Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management. This type of exercise included mobilization of personnel and resources, and the actual movement of emergency personnel equipment and resources to demonstrate coordination and response capability to any emergency.

††††† The Operations Division tracks and reviews statistical information compiled from the facilities through the Statistical Tracking Analysis Report to determine any discernable patterns that may impact facilities.In FY 08/09, the inmate on staff level 1 assaults were reduced by 7.77%, the inmate on staff level 2 assaults were reduced by 8.47%, the inmate on inmate assaults were reduced by 18.15%, and inmate disciplinary infractions were reduced by 1.38%.

†† †† The Department trained and put on-line the first cell phone detection dog in the Northeast and was only the third state in the country to complete this.This specially-trained canine has already located seven cell phones within the prisons.

 

Security Division

In FY 08/09, the Security Division conducted more than 201 formal investigations and collaborated with outside law enforcement in numerous criminal investigations.This Division is working closely with the Chief Stateís Attorneyís Office, with staff being assigned to criminal intelligence task forces and assisting with ďCold CaseĒ files.

The Special Intelligence Unit, Security Risk Group Intelligence Unit and Telephone Monitoring Unit work closely together in the gathering of gang intelligence information.Significant improvements were made to streamline the collection, analyzing and dissemination of this criminal intelligence information.The Security Risk Group Intelligence Unit provided training for staff in gang identifier recognition, latest trends and management techniques, and also contributed this information to more than 125 community, federal, state, local and military groups.

The Telephone Monitoring Unit staff participated in more than 337 criminal investigations involving other law enforcement entities.

 

Programs and Treatment Division

From July 2008 through June 2009 a total of 70,646 population transfers were approved by the Offender Classification and Population Management Unit (OCPM).OCPM staff also managed all interstate transfer agreements with 31 states and all felony and sex offender DNA collection and registry requirements for the Department.The OCPM Unit continues to assist in the development of a new sentence and time calculation system (eOMIS) which will be available to the Department in the near future. This new time computation system will provide greater accuracy and efficiency for records offices throughout the Department.

In accordance with goals outlined in ďPartners in ProgressĒ the State of Connecticut Reentry Strategy, Offender Reentry Services Unit (ORSU) staff members partnered with Department staff, other criminal justice agencies and community providers to facilitate a consolidated, statewide network of services to increase offender success in the criminal justice system from admission to incarceration, through end-of-sentence with continued support in the community. ORSU staff participated in the development of a three day Reentry Symposium in February 2009 through receipt of a Serious and Violent Offender Reentry Grant through the Bureau of Justice Assistance. The training, facilitated by the Center for Effective Public Policy, included participants from the Department of Correction, Board of Pardons and Paroles, representatives from the stateís Criminal Justice Policy Advisory Committee, community providers and representatives of the stateís major cities.

Health care was provided to an average incarcerated population of 18,774 and a community release population of 4,571 offenders that represents total offenders served. Health service staff assessed 62,408 offenders on facility intake and 213,941 offenders for sick call, and mental health staff assessed 184,289 outpatient offenders and 64,982 inpatient offenders (including 24,413 suicide assessments).HIV testing/screening was conducted for 5,379 offenders.There were 26 inmate deaths, four completed suicides and 165 suicide attempts for FY 08/09.

All Addiction Services counselors and supervisors are state certified and/or licensed to provide services. During FY 08/09, 9,242 offenders received structured facility-based and community treatment services.

The Education Unitís Unified School District #1 served more than 18,652 incarcerated adults with an average daily enrollment of 2,919.The District awarded 824 GED diplomas, 23 with honors, with an overall passage rate of 79%.Certificates of vocational training were awarded to 1,991 offenders in 26 disciplines.Since the implementation of the Reentry Class in July 2007, 2,400 inmates have completed the 30 day curriculum.

During FY 08/09, the Religious Services Unit provided 19,727 worship services, study sessions and other spiritual programs.Chaplaincy staff provided approximately 84, 981 hours of ministry time to the inmate population.Numerous religious volunteers from the community augmented that effort. Inmate attendance at these programs and services totaled approximately 322,000.

The Volunteer and Recreation Services Unit coordinated the provision of 151,320 service hours by 1,798 volunteers, the equivalent of 73 full-time positions.Activities created through citizen involvement include addiction recovery support, basic educational services and chaplaincy services.

The Offender Programs and Victim Services Unit provided re-entry programming to 2,287 offenders in FY 08/09, and 1,696 offenders utilized the facility-based job centers for skill building and employment services, including 824 completed resumes. The Victim Services staff maintained 2,313 active cases of Victim Notification.

††

External Affairs Division

††† Over the course of the past fiscal year, the External Affairs Division has been involved in several major initiatives designed to better inform the public of the work of the Connecticut Department of Correction and its prominent position within the stateís criminal justice community.

††††† In the wake of the Cheshire tragedy, a significant undertaking in association with the Connecticut Television Network has been the video taping of the hearings of the State Board of Pardons and Paroles within the stateís correctional facilities.The broadcast of these hearings on this state government channel has provided viewers with reassurance that the parole process is being conducted in a thorough and methodical manner, which places responsibility on the offender to comply with the expectations of incarceration and law abiding society.The programs have become the highest rated offering on the Network.

††††† The Office of Public Information has utilized its contract with the news media to emphasize not only the Departmentís re-entry model that prepares offenders for reintegration into law abiding society, but also its mission of safety and security as well as departmental efforts to be an effective steward of the taxpayersí money.Major stories that have appeared in state news papers include a profile of the Departmentís new cell phone detection K-9, and an increasing investment in the use of teleconferencing to reduce the cost of transporting inmates to various hearings.

††††† Department efforts to provide firewood to those in the community who couldnít afford heat were documented as was a program to combat gambling addiction among inmates at the stateís womenís correctional institution.A new hospitality class, designed to prepare offenders for work in hotels, restaurants and casinos was covered in one story, while the Departmentís growing program of inmate vegetable gardens to supplement the offender diet was the subject of another article.

††††† The Departmentís Open House program for state and local officials completed its first year, providing elected and public safety officials with a firsthand view and information regarding the operations of the correctional facilities within their constituent area.In conjunction with the Legislative Liaison, state representatives and senators have been encouraged to visit the facilities as part of the departmental commitment to transparency.

††††† Enhancements to the Departmentís Internet site are ongoing and this year saw the addition of a Family and Friends section, which is intended to provide easily obtainable information to those individuals who are vital to the re-entry of the offender population.Updated visiting schedules and cancellations are posted on the website as well.A new Inmate Medical Information page was developed and posted in associated with the University of Connecticut Correctional Managed Health Care. Preparations have also been made to completely redesign the site to make it even more informative and user friendly.†† The Departmentís internal Intranet site has also seen continual upgrades in an effort to insure it serves as an electronic bulletin board for agency staff.

††††† The External Affairs Division again this year played an extensive role as the Departmentís liaison to the Melanie Ilene Rieger Memorial Conference Against Violence. A significant component of the Departmentís commitment to the victims of crime and their survivors, it is the largest such informational gathering in the Northeast.

††††† In association with the Yale School of Nursing, the Division has been working on telling the story of the Departmentís commitment to Hospice and the training of inmate volunteers who provide end of life service to other offenders.†† Initial videotaping has taken place for a documentary that will be utilized to train other correctional agencies and the New York Times has committed to an article about the program.

††††† The Departmentís re-entry mission was supported through efforts to better measure and provide monthly statistics regarding the Time Out Program at the Robinson Correctional Intuition.Designed to address the needs of offenders who have failed to comply with the requirements of community placement, the new monthly reporting provides up to date statistics of how many offenders have come into the program, how many have been reassigned to community placement and how many of them have been successful.

††††† A major undertaking by the Office of Standards and Policy was the creation of a computerized data base of all past and present Administrative Directives and any exceptions that may have been issued.This allows for easy navigation through the entire history of a particular directive and is particularly supportive in legal matters to show the progression of a departmental policy.In keeping with the Departmentís efforts to more efficiently utilize state funds, the number of copies of Administrative Directives that are routinely sent out for review has been reduced from nearly 50 to only about a half dozen, in an effort to conserve paper and copying costs.†† Additionally, the Departmentís annual report for the year will be provided entirely via electronic means, instead of the traditional paper copy.

††††† The Division also assisted in the creation of a revised Strategic Plan for the Department, which will chart its path and continuing success in the upcoming years.

 

††††† Through the Legislative Liaison Unit the DOC submitted eight proposals; that would have prohibited disclosure of employee files to inmates, prohibited the possession of an electronic wireless communication device by an inmate, made technical changes to and clarified provisions concerning inmate discharge savings accounts, authorized the commissioner to release inmates to the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), required notification to the DOC when a request is made to a public Department for disclosure of information about a correctional facility, prohibit the disclosure of the identity of execution teams, and allowed an inmate to stay in a correctional facility beyond the inmate's discharge date.

The Judiciary Committee raised the DOCís proposals and consolidated them into one bill, House Bill 6709, An Act Concerning the Department of Correction. The Committee held a public hearing on the bill on March 24, at which the Department requested that the provision regarding the non disclosure of the identity if execution teams be withdrawn from further consideration due to pending litigation. The Committee favorably reported the bill without the execution team and ICE provisions. The House passed the bill on June 2 with a vote of 144-4. The bill was referred to Senate where it died on the Senate calendar.

††††† The Legislative Liaison Unit tracked and monitored 233 bills of interestto the Department during the regular and special sessions of the legislature and received and responded to 450 inquiries from elected officials and members of the public.

††††† The Freedom of Information Unit handles on an average of 700 requests a year.During FY 08/09 the Unit was involved in 37 hearings at the Freedom of Information Commission and 13 full commission hearings.The Freedom of Information Commission reports that they routinely handle an inmate hearing 5 days a week. The respondent in these hearings includes the Department of Correction and/or other agencies and municipalities.The leading issue during the 2008-2009 fiscal year was the ordered release of Department of Correction staff personnel and similar files to the incarcerated population.The Department continues to appeal these decisions in the state courts.

††††† During FY 08/09, the Office of Standards and Policy updated 45 Administrative Directives, to include: 2.17, Employee Conduct; 2.22, Workplace Violence Prevention Policy; 6.10, Inmate Property; 8.11, HIV Infection/AIDS; and 10.1, Inmate Assignment and Pay Plan. Five new directives were created: 2.24, Employee Arrests, Restraining Orders and Criminal Summons; 2.25, MRSA Prevention and Management Protocols for Employees; 4.8, Audio/Video-Conferencing; 10.15, Inmate Personal Identification Procurement and Storage; and 11.4, Searches Conducted in the Community.

††††† Of the 137 Administrative Directives in effect, 134 possess the Commissionerís signature, with the remaining three being the focus of this yearís work. In the upcoming year, four new Administrative Directives are planned 6.13, Video Recording and Digital Photography; 11.5, Time Out Program; and 12.1, Management of Offenders under the Age of 18.Over the past fiscal year, the Office of Standards and Policy has been assisting the Division of Parole and Community Services with the development and implementation of a field operations manual in order to streamline and standardize the day-to-day operations of the Division, to date 38 of the 43 (88%) divisional policies have been completed.

††††† During the course of FY 08/09 the Correspondence Unit replied to nearly 400 pieces of correspondence, which were refer to the agency by the governorís office.This Unit also provides responses to inquiries received from the public via the Department of Correction website e-mail address, doc.pio@po.state.ct.us.On average some 40 e-mails are responded to via this e-mail address each day.

 

A partial list of the Audio/Video Production Unitís accomplishments for the past year include:

         the production and duplication of the MRSA DVD used by Health Services during their orientation of new inmates

         the archiving, cataloguing and editing of more than 2,600 digital images currently used for training and recruitment

         the duplication and cataloguing of the more than 325 DVDs and videocassettes currently used in pre-service and in-service training

         the production of the September 11th memorial video used on the Intranet

         the analog to digital media transfers of pre-service and in-service training materials

         the routing repair and maintenance of media equipment at the academy

         the preproduction of a Behavior Management training video

         the recording of voiceovers for the Learning Management System

         the generation of photos to be used in the department newsletter

         the facilitation of five graduation ceremonies

 

Parole and Community Services Division

During FY 08/09, 4,017 offenders were released to Transitional Supervision (TS) compared to 3,225 in FY 07/08, a 25% increase.The number of persons released to parole rose to 2,737 in FY 08/09 from 2,097 in FY 07/08, a 31% increase.Overall, releases to all forms of community supervision, including residential placement, increased to 8,872 in FY 08/09 from 7,204 in FY 07/08, a 23% increase.During the same period, the total violation rate for persons on community supervision decreased 12 percent.Criminal violation rates for all community supervision programs were six percent lower in FY 08/09 than in FY07/08 after declining 33% the previous year.The number of offenders on all forms of community supervision increased in FY 08/09, from 4,292 on July 1, 2008 to 4,540 on July 1, 2009, a 6% increase.This combination of events contributed significantly to the reduction in the incarcerated population that occurred in this past fiscal year.

In FY 08/09, the Parole and Community Services Division, in collaboration with the Contracts Administration Office, designed and implemented a rebidding process for all contracted residential and non-residential community services.Residential Services staff spent many months evaluating the existing community service network as a whole to review current offender access to and usage of appropriate programs in needed numbers, types and locations.Staff then began meeting with a smaller working group to evaluate these factors in an effort to establish future needs. Various units were consulted, including Health and Addiction Services, Offender Re-entry Services, and Offender Programs and Victim Services.

This process culminated in the release of an RFP in January 2009.Once proposals were reviewed and scored, an implementation team was established to ensure that the integrated and comprehensive network envisioned by CTDOC staff was available by July 1, 2009.This process was completed in June. The resulting contracts have enabled CTDOC to expand access to residential gender-specific female programming and standardized non-residential services, establish an integrated continuity of care system in which the offender is assigned fewer service providers for longer periods of time, eliminate redundancy in access to contracted programs, provide a greater consistency throughout the network of residential service providers, and redesign the inpatient program model to provide access for more offenders. Additionally, community residential beds continued to operate at or near a 100% occupancy rate.

In FY 08/09, Special Management Unit (SMU) violation rates were 30 percent lower than the overall community supervision populationís monthly violation rates of 6%.The average monthly criminal violations for SMU cases were less than 1% of the unitís population.This was a remarkable achievement considering the many challenges inherent in the supervision of sex offenders in the community.

The creation and implementation of the Time Out Program (TOP) in March of 2009 at Robinson CI for offenders on TS and/or parole supervision has increased the probability of offenders eventually completing TS and parole successfully while affording parole officers the intermediate ability to temporarily incapacitate offenders exhibiting noncompliance while still maintaining the opportunity to continue supervision of the offenders rather than require the offenders to have their community supervision revoked and face unknown consequences.Upon admission to the unit, The TOP provides a 30-60 day ďtime outĒ period during which prescribed programs are completed.Upon successful completion of the prescribed programs, offenders are returned for community supervision. Since March 2009, a total of 164 persons on TS and 40 parolees successfully completed the TOP program and were returned to community supervision.

Effective April 1, 2008, the Divisionís Fugitive Investigations Unit was assigned the additional responsibility of investigating and apprehending offenders who escape from TS and, as requested, offenders who escape from halfway houses.These new efforts, along with the unitís extensive work with parole absconder investigations and extraditions, resulted in the return to custody of over 160 escapees and absconders during FY 08/09.

In FY 08/09, the Parole and Community Services Division adopted Toxicology Testing, through the use of oral fluid drug testing swabs and hand-held alcohol testing devices to more effectively monitor substance abuse among offenders.Both devices were selected for versatility and mobility.Oral fluid swabs were introduced to eliminate drug testing issues related to cross-gender supervision and testing location.Parole officers are now able to obtain toxicology tests from offenders regardless of gender or location.Hand-held alcohol testing devices were purchased to allow parole officers to monitor offender alcohol abuse in the field or office setting.†††

In FY 08/09, the Parole and Community Services Division implemented the use of the Level of Service Inventory-Revised and Adult Substance Use Survey-Revised (LSI-R/ASUS-R) assessments to identify the likelihood of recidivism, identify criminogenic risks and needs, and match offenders to appropriate interventions.The division uses results from these assessments to determine levels of supervision and program referrals.This evidenced-based risk and needs approach increases public safety by allowing the division to focus resources on those offenders in need of the highest level of services. Parole officers throughout the state were given extensive training to administer these instruments.

Information Reported as Required by State Statute

Affirmative Action Unit

The Affirmative Action Unit reports directly to the commissioner and the purpose of the Unit is to ensure that the principles of equal employment opportunities, affirmative action and diversity are an integral part of the employment and advancement of all employees of the Department of Correction.

The Affirmative Action Unit prepared and submitted the Department of Correction Affirmative Action Plan which was approved by the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities in March 2009. The plan reinforces the Departmentís commitment to having a diversified workforce with equal opportunity for all. At the end of the fiscal year, the number of People of Color in the workforce was 2,205 (32.7% of the total workforce of 6,743). The total number of Female staff was 1,723 (25.6% of the total workforce of 6,743).

This Affirmative Action Unit has continued its emphasis on training the Department of Correction staff in the areas of affirmative action including sexual harassment, and discrimination and diversity. This training is provided to new employees and new supervisors. This past year the Department reinforced its policy on zero tolerance in the areas of sexual harassment and discrimination.

The Department has continued its Diversity Initiative that includes the development of Diversity Councils at each facility and the implementation of an In-Service Diversity Training Curriculum. The Diversity Councils provide line staff with the opportunity to share, value, appreciate and respect staff diversity. They are also intended to foster open communication in addressing and affecting department policies, which bear upon diversity issues.

This unit is significantly involved with the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities, the Attorney General's Office, the African-American Affairs Commission and the Permanent Commission on the Status of Women, and many other community based organizations.