Florida’s prison system near collapse due to staff shortage

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Florida’s prison system remains in critical condition due to an emergency-level exodus of corrections officers, a non-profit news site said in a report

Up to 200 officers have left the system monthly, while prison wardens also “abandoned ship at high rates — five people in five months”, Xinhua news agency quoted the Florida Phoenix report citing Ricky Dixon, who has been acting as the secretary of the Florida Department of Corrections since last November, as saying.

Without an equivalent reduction in Florida’s prison population, Dixon said, remaining officers are being forced to work “entirely excessive overtime hours” in understaffed conditions.

“We can’t properly operate the programs we have now if we don’t have the proper security staff to man them,” he added.

The Florida Department of Corrections operates the third largest state prison system in the US.

The Department has 143 facilities statewide, including 43 major institutions, 33 work camps, 15 Annexes, 20 work release centres and six road prisons/forestry camps.

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