prisons

Corrections officers
Florida Department of Corrections

A deal on the state's public-safety budget that lawmakers reached late Friday would not give the Department of Corrections the 734 additional positions the agency says are necessary to make Florida's prisons more secure.

The new jobs were part of an effort by the department to have corrections officers work eight-hour shifts instead of 12-hour shifts. The department has been reeling from a series of reports about issues such as contraband smuggling and abuse of inmates.

Tomas Ayuso for Reveal

Anyone who serves time for a federal crime will end up in what prison experts say is the best-run system in the country: the Federal Bureau of Prisons. But if you're not a U.S. citizen, you could end up in one of 11 facilities that don't have to follow the same rules – and are run by private companies instead of the government.

This hour of Reveal investigates medical negligence in this parallel private prison system for immigrants. We also expose the shift in criminal justice policy that helped fill up these prisons.

An internal investigation is underway following the deaths of two inmates at Baker Correctional Institution in Sanderson, Florida last week.

They’re just the latest inmate deaths in Florida, which have sparked calls for reform of the state’s correctional system. Florida has the third-largest prison system in the nation, with more than 100,000 inmates and a $2.1 billion budget.

Gov. Rick Scott has ordered an independent analysis of the state's prison system and the development of two prisons to test new ways of handling and housing prisoners with mental health issues, as well as the general population. Scott is also directing the Department of Corrections to work with the departments of Children and Families and Juvenile Justice on how to improve mental health services. That’s a change mental health advocates say is badly needed here in the Sunshine State. We discuss the issue with Denise Marzullo, President and CEO of Mental Health America of Northeast Florida.


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Hundreds of inmate deaths with questionable circumstances have sparked a potential federal investigation into the state's corrections system.

The U.S. Department of Justice has notified state authorities it will look into potential abuses of inmates after 320 people died behind bars in Florida this year - the highest number of inmate deaths on record.

At the same time, there's been a doubling of incidents involving the use of force by corrections officers.

About a fifth of Florida’s inmate population is elderly. A new report warns as the state’s aging prison population continues to rise, officials will soon be dealing with a severe strain on Florida’s budget.

The Florida Department of Corrections characterizes elderly prisoners as those over the age of 50. According to a Florida TaxWatch report, the average health care costs for elderly prisoners is about 11,000 dollars a year—nearly four times what it costs for younger inmates.

Marriage equality, Quality Education for All and Dade Correctional Institution are in the headlines today.

Eddie Wayne Davis, Lenny Curry and Mike Crews are in the headlines today.

Florida Department of Corrections Secretary Mike Crews is a bit troubled by some of the overall prison stats, and he's alarmed by some of the African American numbers as well.

Florida has the third largest prison system in the country, housing about 101,000 inmates. Of those, about 48 percent are black.  

That's just some of the stats Crews mentioned at the recent 29th Annual National Conference on Preventing Crime in the Black Community, which took place in Jacksonville.

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TALLAHASSEE (The News Service of Florida) — A new study by the Pew Charitable Trusts finds Florida leading the nation in inmates who “max out” their sentences — serving 100 percent of their time and being released with no supervision beyond the prison gates.

The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office, Mayor Alvin Brown, and chikungunya are in the headlines today.

Marissa Alexander, JEA, the St. Johns River Ferry, and Charlie Crist are in the headlines today.