NYSCOPBA: Anything But a Holiday Weekend at Five Points Correctional Facility

Sep 03, 2013, 13:57 ET from NYSCOPBA, Inc.

ROMULUS, N.Y., Sept. 3, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- While many New Yorkers enjoyed barbequing and other holiday activities with family and friends this past Saturday, Correction Officers at Five Points Correctional Facility in Romulus, NY, had their hands full responding to a myriad of inmate fights and staff assaults, which sent three Officers and one Sergeant to the hospital.

According to New York State Correctional Officers and Police Benevolent Association (NYSCOPBA) reports, an inmate who was attempting to pass contraband to another inmate became physically confrontational with Officers when they intervened. The inmate's assault sent a Sergeant and three Officers to the hospital for treatment of their injuries to their shoulders, ribs and back. They have been unable to return to duty as a result of their injuries.

This incident was part of a 5 hour block of time that saw Officers respond and break up two separate inmate fights; save an inmate's life that was attempting suicide; and save another inmate's life when they stopped his cellmate, who was repeatedly stomping on his head in his cell.

"Our Officers and Sergeants are to be commended for their actions at Five Points on Saturday," said Mike Dildine NYSCOPBA's Western Region Vice President. "They report for duty every day in New York State Prisons understanding they have a difficult and dangerous job to perform, but some days, like Saturday, the job is especially hazardous. What I don't understand is why our Governor continues to make our job harder than it already is."

Dildine notes that Governor Cuomo has announced four more correctional facility closures for 2014, bringing the total to 13 facility closures under his leadership. He claims that facility closures coupled with the double bunking policies of the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (DOCCS) has crammed more inmates into limited spaces, resulting in an alarming trend of more violent assaults on staff, as well as increased inmate violence on other inmates.

"The Governor's decisions have placed our Officers and Sergeants safety on the back burner, and have contributed to unacceptable violent work environments for these public servants," notes Dildine. "His (Cuomo's) decisions continue to erode public safety as a means of balancing the State's budget."

The incidents at Five Points follow closely behind a vicious assault on a Correction Officer at Attica Correctional Facility which left the Officer hospitalized.

Michael Dildine