A look back at our advocacy this year and our priorities for 2021

MCO Members,

As the COVID-19 pandemic drags on, it continues to create extremely hazardous and stressful working conditions inside of all of the state prisons and the state forensic psychiatry hospital. As we all know, the pandemic conditions have been made even worse by the extremely high number of vacancies in our ranks. Simply put, our jobs have never been more dangerous than they have been for the last eight months.

Since the onset of the pandemic, we have been voicing our concerns on working conditions and staffing levels to the Department, the Legislature and the Governor’s office in addition to pushing for hazard pay, better PPE and restoration of leave time for forced quarantines.

As the new year approaches, we will continue our efforts to address these issues through all means possible, including continuation of our awareness campaign to shed light on our situation and educate legislators and the public on what is needed to remedy ongoing issues, make our jobs safer, and improve our staffing levels. This will be a group effort, and the membership will be called upon to take part in voicing our needs and concerns. We need members at all facilities to fill out this form  to report COVID-related violations of mandate protocol, lack of PPE, closed assignments and inmate unrest.

The MCO Executive Board and staff are working on the campaign phases now. For a summary of our efforts since the pandemic began, please go to the MCO website.

Stay safe and enjoy the holiday season as much as you can with these extreme conditions.

Byron Osborn

MCO President