Department Of Human Resources, Department Of Corrections, Vermont discussed on The Dave Gram Show on WDEV


Graham show here yesterday and he was talking about this idea of setting up a An outside entity to the to to basically be a place for complaints about the internal workings of the Corrections Department to go and have them be addressed and resolved that Cetera. I think there's a long history history here in a wide variety of different types of complaints within the Department of Corrections were inmates are allowed to file a grievance and and the ah or their grievance procedures for St Staff to you know the the Union contract with state employees And the a real problem though. Is that these things tend to just go down the memory hole because you're you're essentially complaining about a system in which the people who are receiving complaints also work in the system so I love to sort of separate these two issues. I think so what I was just talking about is is actually more a an investigation into what happened. And so so this is I think really could use a ton of investigations around this. There's the state police criminal Komo investigation. there is Mike this internal short term He's calling it a review now. She hopes to end by next week with some recommendations recommendations for the governor there. Is this Additional investigation that that he wants the federal government to take on which I think would look at what what what has gone wrong at at the prisoners apartment more generally over the past few years and then there is what I think you were just too which is What what is going to be the the ongoing system for people who are reporting complaints that happened now or in the future and so? That's that's another thing. That Smith is working on And he has tried his establishing Two different hotlines one of which is for employee complaints and that hotline hotline would go to the Department of Human Resources which is outside of the Agency of Human Services so that that number was set up yesterday. So please who has the report can use that hotline now Separately there is he's working on establishing a hotline for inmates to Report Abuse Service conduct of any kind I've got a story that shit lead on our website pretty soon hopefully That talks about what the system has been for reporting reading and It my reporting suggests that Vermont has actually knocked been in compliance with federal law. Federal law requires prisons to have have a hotline for inmates that goes to an independent third party so they can make a complaint And not complain goes outside of the facility ability and will be sent back to the facility in some sort of Anonymous fashion. So it's it's a way to protect people from retaliation allegation Vermont has not had that Vermont has had a hotline for inmates but the Hotline just goes to the Department of Corrections Central Central Office. which you know you can see why that might be a problem right? If you're saying some kind of abuse at the hands of prison officials you don't want to report that to prison officials So that is the challenge for Smith Right now is to find an outside entity who will actually take on that job up at according to Department crash officials. I've spoken to It's it's been difficult to find an outside Body willing to actually do that work or if you really need a response of hotline there's always eight six five ten twenty. That's the number for seven days paul-heinz folks and we also have just got a call in from Steve Howard of the Vermont. What State Employees Association obviously Among the players in this whole scene up there at the prisoners are a bunch of state employees who Who actually do the day to day work of providing correction action officers services etc.? Good Morning Steve. Good Morning Dave. How are you good? you got to be quick here because we only have a couple of minutes left. But what's what's on your mind. Well it's just a couple of things I think. It's really really important to stress that the vast majority of correctional officers across the State of course are upstanding folks who respect and Respect the rights of the folks who they are working with the incarcerated population in the state that needs to be said Straightforwardly but I also think we have to take a look at the Department of Human Resources and the role they. They played in in the Department of Corrections. And then what did they know how much worked. How much investigative work did they do? I would also suggest that Secretary Smith and others look for another entity that That are members could call to report information other the Department of Human Resources Somebody who is not attached to management Because I think that is probably going to be more successful in actually getting reports done than if few attach if if you ask people to call the Managers Department of Human Resources. Yeah I mean I I eventually is i. I was only maybe one quarter joking before the break. When I said you know the the the place to call is eight I looked it up about eight? Six five ten twenty. I think that's the number for seven days and that's so that's I mean. Let me give you a different number. Two Oh three six three. That's dedicated the SEC. Reporting live so two to three sixth grade the three so okay well. You don't WanNA flood your switchboard. That's Okay Okay Paul. Sorry about that man caused trouble. But I I think Steve You make good point but I also think that eventually that kind of is the role of the media when you want to get outside of government Sometimes the place to call to get really you know pretty pretty pretty Hard hitting and and tough and neutral and objective responses to problems within government structures is You know recall your local call the call seven days call call your local newspaper called digger whoever you want to. But that's the media play a crucial role here and I just you know again. My Hat's off the Paul for his work in this regard so something as well. Here's I just wanted to piggyback piggybacking. On what Steve was saying Some of the Many of the complaints that I've been quoting from the DNC employees who have been speaking out about this all right. That's what are the complaints that this story was from a Siesta Union Steward Who spoke out about this years ago? The you know the which.

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