At the state level, departmental Administration has grown four times over the last five years all while cutting or redirecting positions on the line of every institution that has increased overtime, hold-over’s, and the number in frequency of staff assaults (average 9 per day by CCPOA statistics). The increase of staff assaults are never reported in the local newspaper. If it’s reported about an inmate, it’s a huge injustice of abuse of authority and power by officers. If it happens to an officer, it’s just part of the job and the question is asked ‘what did the officer do to upset the inmate’? Let’s not forget that these inmates are not in prison due to excessive good behavior. The Administration’s stance has become to believe and defend those who break laws and accuse those who are hired to enforce them.
Officers are treated as guilty until proven innocent and inmates are believed and coddled before the investigation even begins. It’s understandable that an investigation has to be done. Just look at the sources for what they are and place belief in them accordingly. Not everything is a conspiracy against an inmate or by fault of an officer’s action. Believe it or not, we get set up too. Our backgrounds were extensively cleared to be hired by the department. Their backgrounds are the reasons why they were incarcerated. If an investigation has to be done, go after the person where the responsibility lies no matter if he may be an inmate, officer, or administrator. Establish the facts and punish those at fault. Don’t look for the easy scapegoat, look at the truth. Assumption without investigation is a liability. So is turning a blind eye to the guilty party.
Many line officer positions have been cut or redirected while more and more administrative positions equivalent to Captains level or higher have been created at the local and state levels. What is a Captain or above salary compared to officers with an overtime cap and why are there so many new administrative positions in Sacramento and the institutions? Which is more worthy of their salary: The one who puts his safety and life on the line every day or the pencil pusher who creates policy without understanding the stresses of what necessitates running a unit or yard with rival gang members living, recruiting, and planning to attack each other all the while attempting to keep all sanctions free of harm and to go home unharmed yourself? The State Administrators have created an unsafe work environment, making themselves liable.
Administration at the state level has created more unnecessary positions to pacify the small amount of whiners that supposedly were not fit to have the same right as the public. At this time those same whiners seem to have more rights than the ‘private sector’. If you don’t believe it, look at the amounts that the medical costs have increased since the Federal Receiver came into power. Those lawsuits have cost the state millions upon millions of tax dollars and the cost to take care of inmate medical conditions and the momentum to grant those services are staggering. A C/O’s base pay has remained the same (before furloughs) for the last six years although the cost of all other services in the department has increased. The fear of lawsuits by inmates and thug huggers have state level administration themselves a liability.
With the local Administration, there have been so many added management positions that need to be justified that nit-picking everything from speed and cell phone use by staff driving onto grounds to where staff park after business hours and weekends have become an offense where you may receive a Letter of Instruction. I’m not speaking about something that will impair the safety and security of the institution. I’m speaking of controlling staff even before they enter the gates of the institution, still on their own time – in their own car! And all that money, energy, and time spent on justifying an administrative placard on a parking space. As an example of impairing safety and security, some institutions have even cancelled quarterly qualifications for certain positions due to budget restraints. So tower positions, transportation and other positions will not remain qualified as required due to budget constraints. How many officers will be ready to ‘stop the threat’ if they can not even maintain the required qualifications for the post they work? Will the officers or warden be held liable?