MCO President Tom Tylutki wrote letters to the editors of several publications this month in light of incidents at KCF and SRF. A few publications published the letter, but many did not.
In case you didn’t see a letter in your local newspaper, here is the text of Tom’s letters.
To editors of newspapers in the Upper Peninsula:
Early this year, corrections officers led informational pickets around the state to raise awareness of dangerous prison security cuts. Perimeter Security Vehicles and routine vehicle patrols were on the chopping block. The Department of Corrections said habitual patrols were too expensive and sporadic patrols would be sufficient. Now the habitual patrols are gone, and we’re seeing the repercussions.
Before day break Nov. 6, a car pulled up outside a housing unit at the Kinross Correctional Facility in Kincheloe. An officer saw someone get out of the car and throw more than 10 packages over the perimeter fences. By the time the officer called for help, and the prison command center dispatched another officer in a security vehicle, it was too late – no one could get a description of the car or the suspect.
Inside the packages were more than two dozen cell phones, six grams of heroin, two pounds of marijuana, two pounds of tobacco, a body-building supplement and cigarette lighters.
When it comes to prison security, every second counts. I can’t help but wonder if this story would have had a different ending if the routine patrols were still in place.
President, Michigan Corrections Organization
421 W. Kalamazoo
Lansing, MI 48933
To editors of newspapers near Saginaw:
MCO will continue efforts to raise awareness of the safety threats corrections officers encounter every day.