Every day corrections officers go to work and spend eight or more hours with inmates who have committed serious crimes. Officers risk their lives and well-being to maintain public safety no matter the cost. Because of this unwavering commitment to their jobs, officers are repeatedly injured in the line of duty.
And, like anyone else, they also deal with personal crises, such as cancer or losing their home to a fire.
In its more than 20 years, the MCO Crisis Fund has raised tens of thousands of dollars, which has helped hundreds of corrections officers make ends meet in times of catastrophe. Fundraisers are held year-round and include a Golf Outing in the summer and a raffle in the fall.
Do you know an MCO member facing catastrophe? Email MCO Executive Treasurer Ed Clements to ask the MCO Executive Board to help a member in need.
The Crisis Fund wouldn’t be possible without the contributions of individuals and businesses who care about corrections staff.
You can mail donations to:
MCO Crisis Fund,
421 W. Kalamazoo St.,
Lansing, MI 48933.
Here are a few stories from corrections staff who have benefited from the fund:
Marcus Collins was shot in an attempted car-jacking at a stoplight in Detroit. With his adrenaline pumping, he drove himself to the hospital.
He didn’t realize he’d been shot until he got out of the car. Marcus was off his feet for two months. After that, it was physical therapy five days a week for more than three months.
The Crisis Fund gave him a donation to help with his daily expenses while he was off work. His coworkers at Woodland Center Correctional Facility stepped up by holding a fundraiser BBQ and 50/50 raffle.
After the Crisis Fund and others helped him out, Marcus was inspired to run for a leadership position. He’s now the MCO chapter president at the Detroit Detention Center.
“There’s nothing more you could do to sell me on the importance of MCO and the Crisis Fund. I benefited and saw how in-depth it went. No one in a leadership position at MCO knew me personally at the time. But as an officer and a brother in MCO, they reached out and said, ‘here’s some help. And anything else you need, just let us know.’”
Joe Laier came home from work one night to hear the news every parent dreads – his teenage son had been in a car wreck.
“His condition was grave. We began a bedside vigil that would span all summer,” said Joe, who is now retired from Parnall Correctional Facility in Jackson.
Joe and his family stayed at a hotel near the University of Michigan hospital. During that time, they were blown away by the actions of all the officers and corrections staff who stepped up to help them.
“(Staff I didn’t know) came up and brought us groceries, took our dirty laundry and washed it. At that time, there was a lady from (SAI) who paid some of our hotel bill,” Joe said.
One of his MCO chapter officials hand-delivered him a check from the Crisis Fund to help with medical and hotel bills. Other officers organized a bake sale, cut his grass, and brought him his mail.
“They were like the family I didn’t know I had,” Joe said. “It’s just incredible how MCO and the officers across the board will bend over backward and do whatever they can to help.”
Joe’s son made a miraculous recovery. Joe Jr. graduated high school, moved out on his own, and now works a full-time job.